Test & Measurement

Portable spectrum analysers address mmWave applications

24th September 2019
Mick Elliott

Extended broadband frequency coverage from 9kHz – 170GHz is now available on Anritsu’s Spectrum Master MS2760A ultraportable spectrum analyser series. The company has also introduced a new series of higher sensitivity models – the Spectrum Master MS2762A - with coverage from 6GHz to 170GHz for demanding sensitivity requirements.

This family of tablet-driven, pocket-sized solutions combines flexibility and portability with excellent dynamic range, allowing design and production engineers to perform basic spectrum measurements, such as channel power, occupied bandwidth, adjacent channel power, and harmonic measurements, on CW signals up to 170GHz.

Together, the Spectrum Master MS276xA family of ultraportable spectrum analysers now provides a full suite of cost-efficient verification tools for a growing number of emerging millimeter-wave (mmWave) applications.

With the addition of two new Spectrum Master MS2760A models and eight introductory Spectrum Master MS2762A instruments, the Spectrum Master MS276xA family of ultraportable spectrum analysers are direct-connect solutions that offer superior dynamic range of typically 108dB at 70GHz.

The MS2762A high sensitivity models have typical DANL as low as -141dBm from 6GHz to 90GHz, covering numerous bands starting from midway through the C band all the way through the E band.

Above 90GHz, the typical DANL performance remains superior at -136dBm to 110GHz; -129dBm between 110 and 145GHz; and -122dBm between 145 and 170GHz.

This performance allows engineers to see more low-level signals, making the spectrum analyzers well suited for numerous applications, including radio astronomy in the D band.

The lower noise floor allows the Spectrum Master MS276xA family to conduct accurate spectrum mask testing of mmWave, point-to-point radios during production.

Amplitude accuracy is typically ±1 dB, which provides engineers with greater measurement confidence and improves overall product performance.

With a sweep speed of less than 24 seconds (typical, processor speed dependent) over the full 6Hz to 170GHz frequency range, the new models shorten test times.

The portable design enables improved accuracy and sensitivity for mmWave measurements by allowing the USB spectrum analysers to be connected directly to the device under test (DUT).

This eliminates the need for calibrating external mixers or changing setups to view a different frequency band.

Removing banded external mixers also simplifies test setup and conducting measurements.

Expanded OTA testing can be conducted with the ultraportable spectrum analysers, compared to bulky spectrum analysers or power meters with limited power range. They are also 30% less than the cost of traditional mmWave bench spectrum analysers.

Remote measurements can be made via USB extenders, making the analysers well suited for applications in which tests, such as antenna or path loss measurements, are conducted from a distance.

Design includes advanced GUI that is highly responsive and operates much faster, as well.

Anritsu sees advantages in many R&D and production applications requiring standard power and CW testing.

Among the environments are automotive radar, microwave radios, and mmWave applications above 110GHz, including object detection radar, radio astronomy, high-resolution military radars and antenna beam pattern testing (in-chamber and outdoors).

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