Probes test electronic devices under extreme conditions

Nov. 19, 2015

Santa Rosa, CA. Keysight Technologies has introduced two extreme-temperature probing solutions: the N7007A extreme-temperature 400-MHz passive probe and the N7013A extreme-temperature extension kit for medium- and high-voltage differential active probes. These probes have bandwidths up to 400 MHz and are suitable for probing electrical signals inside a temperature chamber. These two probing solutions are compatible with a range of Keysight’s InfiniiVision and Infiniium Series oscilloscopes.

Most of today’s electronic products must be tested in chambers under various environmental conditions, including extreme temperatures (high and low). Most test instruments and passive and active probes are limited to operating in temperatures between 0 and 55°C. The most common extreme temperature testing requirements are from -40 to +85°C. Because the test requirements exceed probe temperature specifications, environmental test engineers are unable to insert the probes into the environmental chamber along with the device under test.

“When conducting environmental tests on electronic products, test engineers have to ensure that the probing system they’re using can survive the same severe temperature conditions as the product,” said Dave Cipriani, vice president and general manager of Keysight’s Oscilloscope and Protocol Division. “Keysight’s extreme-temperature probing solution for oscilloscopes is ideal for engineers who need to validate and characterize their designs within these extreme temperature ranges. With Keysight’s test solution, engineers can make quality measurements in extreme environments to more accurately predict their products’ long term performance.”

Today, many engineers use standard temperature probes in extreme conditions, which causes physical damage to the probe. Another common practice among environmental test engineers is to simply attach long wires at the end of their probes, which significantly degrades measurement performance due to excessive inductance and reduced bandwidth. Keysight addresses this issue with the N7007A single-end passive probe and the N7013A probe extension kit for differential active probes.

The N7007A is a 2-meter long, 10:1 passive probe with an input impedance of 10 MΩ and 400-MHz bandwidth. This probe can withstand temperatures ranging from -40 degrees to +85°C. This probe is suitable for a range of general-purpose extreme temperature applications, and with the probe’s 2-meter length, it also can probe hard-to-reach test points in automotive applications.

The N7013A is a 70-cm-long extreme temperature extension kit compatible with four of Keysight’s medium- and high-voltage differential active probes, including the N2790A (±1500 V), N2791A (±700 V), N2792A (±20 V) and N2818A (±20 V). These probes are typically used in power supply testing applications as well as testing automotive differential buses including CAN, CAN FD, and FlexRay. With the N7013A extension kit, engineers can place the main body of the temperature-sensitive differential active probe outside of the environmental chamber, and they can use the extension kit (70-cm-long cable pair) and connection adapters to extend the probes into the environmental chamber under extreme-temperature conditions ranging from -40 to +85°C.

Additional information about these probing solutions is available at and

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