Test & Measurement

Pulse and Pattern Generators are easy to use

25th April 2006
ES Admin
Keithley Instruments has introduced the Series 3400 Pulse/Pattern Generators. They provide superior signal quality and precise control for pulse widths from three nanoseconds to 1000 seconds, as well as a simple, intuitive user interface. Series 3400 pulse and pattern generators are ideal for semiconductor device and material research and characterization, as well as in process integration and advanced materials research applied to such projects as nanotechnology in R&D labs and technology development labs.
The Series 3400 family consists of two units - the Model 3401 Single-Channel 165 MHz Pulse/Pattern Generator and the Model 3402 Dual-Channel 165 MHz Pulse/Pattern Generator. In response to market demand, the Series 3400 represents an extension of Keithley's pulse testing capabilities to a broad range of applications and expands Keithley's expertise beyond DC to the growing need for pulse sourcing and measurement.

Pulse generators are used not only for characterization and transient analysis but also in a wide variety of applications, including data and clock simulation and functional testing for high-speed serial components. In addition, there are many specialized applications, including nanotechnology and serial communications for the wireless industry and beyond that are driven mainly by a reduction in device size and increase in operating speeds of many electronic components and materials. Keithley is evolving its capabilities to meet the changing demands these customers increasingly are facing, such as more complete testing earlier in the process and the need to avoid problems such as self-heating in smaller devices.

The Series 3400 Pulse/Pattern Generators offer key performance advantages over competitive products that lead to greater signal accuracy and tighter control. The most important of these advantages is superior pulse fidelity with precision edge control, which offers the highest precision on the market. Better and more precise control of signals gives engineers greater precision when testing electrical components and characterizing new materials.

The signals produced by the Series 3400 units also have less voltage overshoot, making the signals cleaner and more reliable. Signals generated by the Series 3400 also have greater amplitude accuracy and flatness and less edge-to-edge jitter. These desirable signal characteristics give designers greater pulse control for better measurement certainty.

Keithley's Series 3400 Pulse/Pattern Generator instruments are designed for maximum flexibility, giving users full control over the pulsed source. Users can set critical parameters, including amplitude, rise time, fall time, pulse width and duty cycle, frequency, delay, and offset -- all based on the specific needs of the application. The Series 3400 family also has pattern generation capability, which lets users simulate serial data patterns to test devices and determine their performance characteristics in less than ideal situations.

The Series 3400 Pulse/Pattern Generators feature a maximum frequency of 165MHz with a minimum frequency capability down to 1 milli-hertz and pulse amplitudes of +/-10V or +/-20V. The minimum attainable pulse width is three nanoseconds, which is ideal for advanced research in nanotechnology materials and devices.

Series 3400 instruments are the most intuitive pulse products on the market. Soft menu-specific buttons on the front panel reduce the total number of buttons on the unit. Competitive units have more buttons, making them harder to use. A simplified menu structure eliminates deep, confusing menus common in competitive units. Also, command menus are easier to navigate and require fewer configuration steps, which gets users up and running quickly. The more intuitive interface makes the units quicker to learn than older, more complicated interfaces. Plus, an industry standard command interface eliminates the need to rewrite existing software, reducing installation time and the costs associated with switching from a competitive unit.

Series 3400 instruments easily integrate with other instruments, such as digital multimeters, source-measure units, semiconductor characterization systems, and oscilloscopes. The Series 3400 instruments include multiple user connections, such as GPIB and USB, making them easier to set up and integrate with other systems.

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