Munich, Germany. Rohde & Schwarz has announced the R&S SMA100B analog signal generator, which offers a frequency range up to 20 GHz. The company reports that the new instrument delivers signals with low phase noise (for example, -152 dBc/Hz at a 20-kHz offset for a 1-GHz signal) and high output power with low harmonics, adding that engineers no longer need to compromise between output power and a spurious free dynamic range.
The R&S SMA100B is designed for the RF semiconductor, wireless communications, and aerospace and defense industries.
“The R&S SMA100B enables our customers to verify the true performance of their DUTs without the signal source affecting the results,” said Andreas Pauly, vice president for signal generators, audio analyzers, and power meters at Rohde & Schwarz. “The R&S SMA100B offers unprecedented performance, giving our customers a technological lead in bringing products to the market.”
Pure signals for precision ADC and DAC testing
State-of-the-art ADCs and DACs require pure signals with the lowest phase and wideband noise possible. In addition to delivering pure analog RF signals, the R&S SMA100B is the world’s only analog signal generator that can simultaneously provide a second, independently configurable, extremely pure and synchronized clock signal up to a frequency of 6 GHz, the company said. As a result, users can characterize ADCs with a single analog signal generator. The low wideband phase noise of the clock synthesizer output signal (100 MHz, -175 dBc/Hz, 30 MHz offset) makes it possible to measure the true signal-to-noise ratio of modern ADCs.
“Rohde & Schwarz’s introduction of its low-phase-noise R&S SMA100A signal generator—the predecessor of the R&S SMA100B—nearly a decade ago has helped us evaluate, test, and specify our world-class A/D converters to their maximum capabilities,” said Ron Goga, test director of high-speed A/D converters, Analog Devices Inc. “The close cooperation between our two companies and the timely release of the R&S SMA100B with extremely pure analog RF signals up to 20 GHz coincides with the release of Analog Devices’ new RF series of converters, which includes the new AD9208 dual 3-GS/s 14-bit A/D converter and AD9172 dual 12-GS/s 16-bit D/A converter. The state-of-the-art performance of the R&S SMA100B allows us to continue to showcase our RF data converters in the best possible light.”
The R&S SMA100B is also suitable for use as a clock source when characterizing DACs. The generator’s low phase noise produces minimal signal jitter that does not influence the measurement results for the DACs.
Radar signals for the most demanding applications
The R&S SMA100B has a pulse modulator and generates pulses with short rise and fall times and an on/off ratio below 90 dB. State-of-the-art digital, high-precision automatic level control (ALC) ensures that the absolute top power levels of narrow pulses are output in an accurate, reproducible manner. Closed-loop level control is available for pulse widths starting at 100 ns. These characteristics make it possible to test advanced radar receivers under demanding pulse scenario conditions.
Pure local oscillator signals are often required to verify system performance before the overall integration of a radar system can take place. The R&S SMA100B is a suitable solution, as it can provide high-level signals with low, close-in phase noise (10 GHz, -83 dBc/Hz, 10-Hz offset).
High-quality, state-of-the-art base stations thanks to conclusive blocking tests
A base station receiver’s selectivity is evaluated by several criteria, including how well it suppresses strong interferers. When simulating in-band or out-of-band interferers with the R&S SMA100B, the instrument’s ultralow phase noise option ensures that phase noise and wideband noise from the simulated interferer have a minimal impact on the wanted signal. It is through the signal quality of the R&S SMA100B that a base station’s true interference suppression performance can be demonstrated (for example, wideband noise at 10 GHz is below -160 dBc/Hz at 30-MHz offset).
Wear-free, electronic step attenuators for production environments
The ultrahigh output power option enables the R&S SMA100B to provide up to 38 dBm of output power, eliminating the need for external amplifiers in automated test environments. With its integrated, wear-free electronic step attenuators now standard also in the 20 GHz instruments, Rohde & Schwarz is maximizing the operational life of test systems even with millions of level switching cycles, while ensuring zero wear on the instrument. This solution also offers fast level setting times for the first time ever in a microwave signal generator.
Plug & play with R&S Legacy Pro
The R&S SMA100B is included in the R&S Legacy Pro program and can easily replace obsolete signal generators from Rohde & Schwarz and other manufacturers in automated test environments without the need to modify test software.