Oscilloscope probe meets DC power-rail measurement demands

Posted By : Mick Elliott
Oscilloscope probe meets DC power-rail measurement demands

Keysight Technologies has launched a high bandwidth, low noise oscilloscope probe for making power integrity measurements to characterise DC power rails. The N7020A power-rail probe specifications are tailored for a wide variety of DC power-rail measurements. Probe specifications include very low noise, a large ± 24-V offset range and 2-GHz bandwidth.

Engineers are designing successive generations of products with decreasing DC operating voltages as a way to reduce power and increase clock and data speeds. As DC power rails have shrunk in size, so have the tolerance on those power rails. One of the biggest sources of clock and data jitter in a digital system is noise on the DC power supplies.

Development teams in almost all electronic industries measure the integrity of DC power rails and need tools that provide the signal detail associated with smaller and smaller DC voltages—often just a few millivolts.

The single-ended power-rail probe has a 1:1 attenuation ratio to maximise the signal-to-noise ratio of the power rail being observed by the oscilloscope. This enables the probe to provide a more accurate view of the actual ripple and noise riding on DC power rails.

With its ± 24-V offset range the probe is claimed to have up to 15 times more offset range than comparable power integrity measurement solutions. This large offset range allows engineers and technicians to centre their DC power rails on the oscilloscope screen and zoom-in on it for analysis.

The N7020A power-rail probe has a DC input impedance of 50 kΩ. This large input impedance minimizes DC loading of the power rail when the probe is connected. Many comparable oscilloscope power integrity measurement solutions have a DC input impedance of only 50 Ω, which can adversely affect the behaviour of the DC power rail.

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