LitePoint's ZTEC acquisition melds verification and production test

Teradyne subsidiary LitePoint is expanding its wireless-device test capability with its acquisition last week of ZTEC Instruments. The acquisition highlights the limitations of design-verification and production-test silos and how to address those limitations.

“Our goal is always to provide the right test solution for the job being done,” said Brad Robbins, COO of LitePoint, in a statement. “LitePoint provides innovative solutions designed for testing wireless devices in manufacturing. ZTEC’s cutting-edge solutions are uniquely designed for testing wireless devices at the design-verification stage, in a flexible PXI form factor.”

He added that ZTEC's technology combined with LitePoint’s modulation software will enable easy correlation from design verification to high-volume production testing.

Chris Ziomek, founder and CEO of ZTEC added, “Wireless chipset suppliers use our flexible PXI-based platform for high-performance RF design verification testing. Combined with LitePoint’s systems, our complete, end-to-end solution will shorten the time-to-market for today’s most innovative and market-leading wireless products.”

Ziomek recently explained that his company supports PXI, PXIe, VXI, LXI, and PCI architectures. “We re-use hardware and software blocks to enable simultaneous development of instruments in all of these architectures,” he told EE-Evaluation Engineering before the announcement of the acquisition. “Essentially, we are platform agnostic. We do this to allow our customers to select the platform that best suits their needs and applications.”

So far in 2013, Ziomek said, “ZTEC has introduced a number of software tools for its ZT8200 series of 6-GHz Wireless Test Sets.” These new software tools offer RF characterization and test functionality for digital predistortion, dynamic EVM measurement, MIMO test, and transceiver chipset support.

The acquisition will affect military/aerospace test as well as commercial wireless test. In a statement regarding the acquisition, John Wood, a Teradyne general manager, said, “In the aerospace and defense market, ZTEC’s proven, high-performance instruments are a natural fit with Teradyne’s global Systems Test business. By combining ZTEC’s instruments with Teradyne’s Core System Instruments, we will deliver a highly integrated solution for testing of today’s complex aerospace and defense systems.”

In a September article in EE-Evaluation Engineering, Ziomek addressed ZTEC's support for military/aerospace applications as related to legacy systems.

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