Test & Measurement

Rohde & Schwarz unveils phase noise analyser, VCO tester

7th October 2021
Mick Elliott

High speed, real-time phase noise measurements using sources require high stability in demanding applications. To meet this requirement Rohde & Schwarz has introduced the FSPN noise analyser and FCO tester.

The company says it offers superb sensitivity, accuracy and reliability.

All radio or RF based devices, including radar, communications satellites and mobile phones require the purest signal generation and reception electronics. Without them, the push for ever higher radar resolution or data rate increases for 5G and beyond would be impossible.

Rohde & Schwarz designed its phase noise analyser and VCO tester for production and design engineers who characterise sources such as synthesisers, VCOs, OCXOs, and DROs.

The instrument comes in two models: one covers the frequency range from 1 MHz to 8 GHz and the other from1 MHz to 26.5 GHz, addressing radar and satellite applications in the C band, X band, Ku band, and the complete K band.

Catering to the measurement challenges in these fields, the R&S FSPN expands the Rohde & Schwarz phase noise product portfolio which already contains the high-performance R&S FSWP phase noise, spectrum and signal analyser.

The FSPN shares tried-and-tested FSWP features such as low noise internal local oscillators coupled with real-time cross correlation engines for increased measurement sensitivity.

Cross-correlation sensitivity gains can be viewed in real-time in result traces, allowing users to adjust the trade-off between measurement speed and sensitivity to meet their application requirements.

Users in production need just a few correlations to measure high-quality oscillators, synthesisers or VCOs with high throughput.

By increasing the number of correlations, users in R&D can characterise the most sensitive commercially available synthesisers and oscillators.

Simultaneous device frequency and phase settling times can be measured with up to 8 GHz of real-time analysis bandwidth.

To investigate oscillator long-term frequency stability, the R&S FSPN calculates the Allan variance in the time domain at fixed intervals and uses phase noise measurements to apply cross-correlations and suppress spurs.

The R&S FSPN is also equipped with three ultra-low-noise DC sources to supply and sweep VCOs.

The built-in VCO characterisation measurement mode analyses VCO characteristics such as frequency, sensitivity, RF power or current draw versus tuning voltage.

For a more in-depth view of the device under test, the spot-noise versus tune measurement mode combines a sweep with ultra-low-noise DC sources plus fast and accurate phase noise measurements.

VCO harmonics can also be measured versus tuning voltage without an additional spectrum analyser.

Since Rohde & Schwarz designed the R&S FSPN as a pure phase noise analyser, all relevant measurement modes and enhancements come standard. Users only need to choose the frequency range to order.

The new R&S FSPN phase noise analyser and VCO tester is available now from Rohde & Schwarz.

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