Broadband amplifiers feature tunable transmission characteristics

24th May 2017
Mick Elliott

New technologies and innovations such as eMobility, Internet of Things, 5G and satellite communications are driving markets, bringing about many new developments in the field of wireless communications, in particular RF components, RF subsystems and systems. To address the wide range of tests required during design and product validation Rohde & Schwarz has introduced the R&S BBA130 broadband amplifier family.

The broadband amplifiers were designed for use in development, production and quality assurance and offer output powers from 22W to 4200W in the 80MHz to 6GHz frequency range. Thanks to their compact, modular design, the amplifiers can be optimally scaled and configured. The modular design also provides a secure investment with the option to add future power and frequency range upgrades.

Two control parameter settings are used to optimise the output signal from the amplifier: a continuously variable bias point between Class A and Class AB and the choice between maximum output power and high mismatch tolerance.

The user can change the setting of both controls during operation, e.g. if the signal waveform changes or if different requirements are placed on the output signal while the test is running. Now only one amplifier is needed to measure a DUT's specified data and determine its load limits.

Varying the bias point for the transistors changes the output signal characteristics.

A bias point in Class A yields very good linearity and good harmonic performance and is ideal for generating spectrally clean CW signals.

A bias point in Class AB provides faithful reproduction of pulsed signals and improves the efficiency of the amplifier.

The modular design of the R&S BBA130 family enables flexible dual-band configurations with two different frequency ranges in one housing.

Twin-band configurations with two identical amplifiers in one housing are also possible. With its compact dimensions, the R&S BBA130 family is optimised for maximum flexibility in a small footprint.

An RF output power of up to 750W below 1GHz and up to 300W above 1GHz in just four height units demonstrates the amplifier family's excellent power density.

The amplifiers can be combined into highly integrated systems with flexible frequency and power configurations.

Users can adjust the operating class, select between high output power and high mismatch tolerance, extend the frequency range and scale the output power.

They are now available from Rohde & Schwarz in the frequency ranges from 80MHz to 1GHz, 0.69GHz to 3.2GHz and 2.5GHz to 6.0GHz with output power levels of 22W to 4200W.

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