Test & Measurement

IMD options broaden VNA capabilities

10th June 2015
Mick Elliott

Intermodulation Distortion (IMD) options for the VectorStar platform have been introduced by Anritsu. The options expand the measurement capability of the VNA family to meet the needs of design and production engineers who must conduct highly accurate and efficient IMD measurements on their amplifier designs.

Included in the enhancements is the new IMDViewsoftware that creates an advanced, easy to use graphical user interface (GUI) that simplifies complex IMD measurements and allows for more thorough IMD evaluation.

An Internal RF Combiner/Switch option for VectorStar has also been introduced to provide single connection IMD measurements without the need to re-cable the measurement setup. This is an extremely useful capability, as it reduces setup and measurement time and improves overall accuracy by reducing concatenation errors of multiple calibrations and system setups.

IMDView provides a wide range of tools so engineers have greater confidence in their amplifier designs. Multiple channels and traces allow for the simultaneous display of IMD swept frequency and IMD CW performance under different operating conditions. The software also has the ability to modify key parameters while monitoring the effects, so engineers can quickly determine optimum performance capabilities without switching between configuration panels to view results.

It also tracks the frequency bands of interest, as well as the power levels required of the two tones. During power calibration, the software automatically switches the paths to provide calibrated tones at the DUT input.

With the enhancements, VectorStar is the only VNA platform that can offer engineers three different IMD setups and the ability to upgrade to any of the configurations. IMDView is a software option that simplifies the setup of traces for IMD parameters such as TOI, IM products, and power calibrations.

Adding an Internal Second Source option simplifies establishing the second source and reduces setup time by eliminating the need to locate the proper source. The aforementioned Internal RF Combiner/Switch option provides the capability to alternate between S-parameter and IMD measurements without reconnecting the setup. In addition to saving time, it improves overall accuracy by eliminating multiple calibrations and concatenation errors.

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