Anritsu looks to eliminate “hoist and hope” with portable instruments

Anritsu is closing out 2012 by expanding its lines of portable instruments with the new PIM Master MW82119A and the new Spectrum Master MS2720T series of high-performance handheld spectrum analyzers. Officials at the company described both instruments as ready to go where they are needed, whether to a rooftop installation or atop a tower.

The PIM Master MW82119A represents an expansion of the company's passive intermodulation (PIM) test solutions. Tom Bell, senior product manager at Anritsu, described the instrument as the industry's first high-power, battery-operated, portable PIM test analyzer. One quarter the size and half the weight of alternative PIM test solutions, he said, the MW82119A offers the inherent advantages of PIM Master—including 40-W testing and Anritsu’s patented Distance-to-PIM (DTP) technology—in a compact housing suited for difficult-to-access sites, such as remote radio head (RRH) installations and indoor distributed antenna systems (DAS). With the new instrument, it's no longer a matter of “hoist and hope” after testing on the ground, Bell said.

Distributed antenna systems, Bell said, are great for bringing cellular coverage where it's needed—indoors or to large outdoor venues—but they provide significant opportunities for problems: metal structures are often near antennas, and multiple operators often take advantage of a neutral host system, increasing the probability of IM in the Rx band. In such situations, the new analyzer offers high power at the head end as well as low power for branch testing, and its DTP technology is critical for locating faults, Bell said.

Bell noted that PIM can result from loose RF connections, poorly prepared terminations, and rusty or corroded surfaces. On rooftop installations, PIM can result from flashing at the edge of the roof or rusty roof-mounted air-conditioning equipment. PIM in the Rx band, he said, can result in access failures, dropped calls, and low data rates.

The MW82119A comes in six models to address major frequency ranges, including the upper and lower 700-MHz bands as well as 850 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 1900 MHz, and 1900/2100 MHz. All six PIM Master MW82119A analyzers incorporate DTP technology, allowing tower contractors, maintenance contractors, and wireless service provider field technicians to pinpoint the location of PIM problems, whether they are on the tower or outside the antenna system. The analyzers also test at 40 W, which allows the PIM Master MW82119A to locate faults that conventional 20-W test solutions might miss, such as intermittent and power-sensitive PIM problems, Bell said.

In addition to its compact, lightweight design, the PIM Master MW82119A offers a flexible power adjustment capability that allows a single MW82119A analyzer to conduct PIM testing on a low-power DAS as well as on high-power macro cells.

The PIM Master MW82119A is designed to withstand transportation shock, vibration, and harsh outdoor test conditions associated with cell site deployment, installation, and maintenance. The analyzer's can save and recall test set ups for standardized testing, and limit lines can be set for visual and/or audible pass/fail criteria. Anritsu's Line Sweep Tools can be used to manage PIM Master MW82119A measurements and generate reports that combine VSWR data as well as PIM data into a unified site report. PIM measurements can be tagged with the GPS location when the analyzers are equipped with the GPS option. The PIM Master MW82119A delivery is 4 to 6 weeks.

Spectrum Analyzer

Anritsu's Spectrum Master MS2720T provides field technicians and engineers with performance that rivals a bench-top spectrum analyzer, according to Anritsu senior product manager Steve Thomas. The MS2720T features a touch screen, full-band tracking generators to 20 GHz, and, said Thomas, best-in-class performance for dynamic range, DANL, phase noise, and sweep speed to handle spectrum monitoring, hidden signal detection, RF/microwave measurements, and testing of microwave backhauls and cellular signals. The instruments, he said, feature a “handheld, battery-operated design that enables users to conduct spectrum analysis measurements anywhere, anytime.”

Instruments in the new family provide continuous frequency coverage from 9 kHz to 43 GHz. Each instrument features an improved sweep mode that allows users to set resolution bandwidth from 30 kHz to 10 MHz with minimal effect on sweep speed. Because the sweep speed with a 30-kHz bandwidth is nearly the same as a 10-MHz RBW, sensitivity can be selected without the need for long sweep times. Sweep triggering can be set to free run or a single sweep. In zero-span, sweeps can be free run, set to trigger when a signal meets or exceeds a designated power level, or it can be externally triggered. Spans can be set from 10 Hz to 9, 13, 20, 32, or 43 GHz, in addition to zero span.

The MS2720T has dynamic range of > 106 dB at 1-Hz RBW, DANL of -163 dBm in 1-Hz RBW, and phase noise of -112 dBm at a 10-kHz offset at 1 GHz. A burst-detect sweep-mode function allows emitters as short as 200 µs to be captured every time, allowing the MS2720T to detect bursty signals that can lead to finding intermittent or bursty emitters. A Burst Detect Sweep Mode increases sweep speed more than 1,000 times in a 15-MHz span.

A full-band tracking generator that covers 100 kHz to 9, 13, or 20 GHz is available. The tracking generator provides 0.1-dB power step size, wide dynamic range up to 100 dB, and power output flatness of ±0.5 dB. The tracking generator includes a continuous wave (CW) generator for measuring fixed frequency components, as well. The built-in tracking generator, said Thomas, limits the number of instruments a technician must carry into the field.

The Spectrum Master MS2720T incorporates an 8.4-in. touch-screen user interface that lets users add shortcut buttons for any menu button or file. The MS2720T has extensive interference measurement capability, including spectrograms that show events over time, making it simple to locate intermittent interferers. Signal-strength measurements, coupled with a directional antenna, make it easier to find rogue transmitters. Like all Spectrum Master handheld spectrum analyzers, the MS2720T has dedicated routines for one-button measurements of field strength, channel power, occupied bandwidth, adjacent channel power ratio (ACPR) and carrier to interference (C/I) ratio.

The MS2720T offers six options for measuring the major wireless standards around the world, such as LTE FDD/TDD, GSM/GPRS/EDGE, W-CDMA/HSPA+, TD-SCDMA/HSPA+, CDMA/EV-DO, and WiMAX Fixed/Mobile. Other capabilities include measurements for EMI that when combined with Anritsu’s EMI probe kit allows engineers to troubleshoot EMI issues and provide an inexpensive way to “pre-screen” for problems, improving time-to-market.

Designed for field use, the Spectrum Master MS2720T has a durable housing that can withstand the extreme temperatures and environments associated with field use. Depending on the model, weight is between 4.4 kg (9.7 lbs.) to 4.9 kg (10.7 lbs.), and all models measure 315 x 211 x 94 mm (12.4 x 8.3 x 3.7 in). The Spectrum Master MS2720T delivery is 4 to 6 weeks ARO.

Anritsu Company, www.anritsu.com

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