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RF tool renders high-speed serial waveforms

Posted: 13 Aug 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:arbitrary waveform generators? RF tool? high-speed serial waveforms?

Tektronix Inc. announced the new AWG7000B and AWG5000B Series of arbitrary waveform generators (AWG). The AWG B series provides a 20 percent performance boost over many of the prior AWG instruments and continues to be the world's fastest and most capable family of AWG's, designed to meet the test needs for high-speed serial data buses and wideband RF applications, according to Tektronix. With 9.6GHz effective RF output, 10bit resolution, and sample rates up to 24GSps, the AWG7000B is the only AWG that can produce high-speed serial waveforms with real life imperfections including noise, jitter, pre/de-emphasis and multilevel signaling up to 8Gbit/s. Also announced today is the radar signal creation optionRDRfor the RFXpress Software suite, offering the ultimate flexibility in creating Pulsed radar waveforms on the AWG7000B and AWG5000B.

"Engineers have told us that they need greater performance, capability, and versatility from a signal source to keep pace with the latest technology," said Mike Higashi, VP of signal sources product line, Tektronix. "Tektronix designed the AWG B series to minimize complexity for users and to provide the performance needed to match increasing high-speed serial data rates and the advance of wideband digital RF technologies. The AWG B series can create, replicate or generate virtually any signal and also has the ability to generate up to six signals simultaneously on the AWG7000B Series. No other AWG can match the performance, capability and flexibility of the Tektronix AWG B series."

High-speed serial challenges
Design engineers who are developing new technologies such as Serial ATA Gen 3, PCIe 2.0, PCIe 3.0, HDMI 1.3, DisplayPort and the latest storage devices need to process large amounts of data at faster speeds, broader bandwidths and higher frequencies. AWG's are used by engineers in design and test processes to create, replicate and generate either ideal, distorted or "real-life" signals including noise, jitter, glitches and other imperfections to assist with prototype, debug, verification and standards compliance for the latest serial data designs.

Tektronix also recently announced the launch of SerialXpress software that performs direct synthesis of waveforms for high-speed serial data receiver testing, making it ideal for testing Serial ATA, SAS, PCIe, HDMI, DisplayPort and other serial bus technologies operating at speeds up to 8Gbit/s. SerialXpress manages the creation of these waveforms for high-speed transmission on the AWG7000B Series. An easy to use interface provided by the SerialXpress software package makes intuitive the creation and management of high-speed serial waveforms. According to Tektronix, the AWG7000B with SerialXpress software is the world's only one-box high-speed serial data signal generator for receiver stress testing, eliminating the need for multiple instruments and complicated test configurations.

Wideband RF applications
In the RF world, technologies ranging from a wireless mouse to a satellite imaging require test equipment that can provide enough sample rate and resolution to re-create even the most complex RF behavior. The latest digital RF technologies often exceed the capabilities of current test equipment to generate the wide bandwidth and fast changing signals that are increasingly seen in many wireless applications such as UWB-WiMedia , radar and others. The new AWG B platform supports wideband RF applications with carrier frequencies up to 9.6GHz.

RFXpress is a powerful and easy-to-use software package that is used to create and edit RF/IF/IQ signals that are generated by arbitrary waveform generators (AWGs). RFXpress fully exploits the wideband signal generation capabilities of Arbitrary Waveform Generators (AWGs) to considerably reduce the time needed for signal creation and simulation, and reducing overall development and test time. The AWG7000B supports direct generation of signals in all UWB-WiMedia bandgroups (BG1-BG6) when used with RFXpress and WiMedia options.

The new RDR option for RFXpress offers the ultimate flexibility in creating pulsed radar waveforms. Option RDR provides the ability to build a radar pulse suite starting from a pulse, to pulse trains, to pulse groups. It supports applications such as resolving range and doppler ambiguity, frequency hopping for Electronic Counter Counter Measures (ECCM) and Pulse to Pulse Amplitude variation to simulate Swerling target models.

UWB-WiMedia signal creation for all the bandgroups of the UWB spectrum is possible with the updated RFXpress option UWBCF/UWBCT. The UWB-WiMedia conformance mode enables generation of all signals that conform to standard specifications, while the custom mode enables adjustment of the signals for stress and margin testing.

The maximum sample rate has increased from 20GSps in the previous generation to 24GSps with the AWG7000B Series providing engineers with 20 percent improvement, more than 4x the performance compared to any other AWG.

The AWG7000B is able to generate signals including imperfections such as noise and jitter up to 12Gbit/s with 35ps rise time (20/80) for high-speed serial data applications and modulated digital RF/IF signals up to 9.6GHz for wideband applications including advanced radar.

The AWG5000B and AWG7000B Series are available immediately for order. Pricing starts at $28,000 for the 600MSps AWG5002B and $65,000 for the 6GSps AWG7061B. The RFXpress software package starts at $5,000.

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