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TestBench, September 2010:Aeroflex's Broadband Signal System

September 15, 2010
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Aeroflex Cupertino, leading specialists in producing digital broadband test and measurement solutions for wireless and satellite communications, recently introduced an integrated modular Broadband Signal System (BSS) comprised of a signal analyzer and generator or BSAG. The CS9000 BSS, which was introduced at AUTOTESTCON this week, provides the widest bandwidth and deepest memory in a modular RF/baseband test system on the market today.

The CS9000 BSS can simultaneously generate, monitor and record hours of complex signals and signals environments for analysis. This capability targets a range of the most challenging commercial, military and space applications including analysis of complex radio environments, RADAR and EW development and EMI, EME monitoring. The test system has the ability to analyze and detect complex waveforms, which is becoming increasingly important in areas where spectral traffic is heavy. The CS9000 BSS replaces an entire bench of equipment, including spectrum analyzers, oscilloscopes, power meters, and logic analyzers. The system offers modular functionality and a small footprint with integrated hardware and software.

To capture and analyze fast and complex waveforms, the CS9000 has instantaneous bandwidths of 72 (narrowband mode) and 472 MHz and burst rates of up to 500,000 bursts per second. The broadband signal analyzer and signal generator come in various models supporting input/output channels including narrowband (72 MHz BW), Wideband (472 MHz BW) and switchable (72/472MHz BW) with tunable frequency ranges from 2 to 6 GHz and 2 to 18 GHz. In the narrowband mode, the 6 GHz versions offer 65 dBc spurious free dynamic range (typical) and 45 dBc spurious free dynamic range for wideband mode.

The CS9000 with BSG-06-NW dual mode output channel generates signals in an RF band with switchable narrow and wide band operation. In a dual mode input channel configuration, the dual mode Signal Analyzer and Recorder channel records and performs analysis of signal characteristics. The CS9000 can also provide simultaneous input and output channels without sharing resources.

The BSA and BSG channels have high-speed memory capacity of 8, 16 or 32 Gigabyte on each channel. Recording time is 20 seconds for 8 GB of memory at 70 MHz BW or 7 seconds at 400 MHz BW. Memory can be increased to support longer recording times of 14 or 21 seconds with the 16 or 32 Gb memory options. In addition, the narrowband input channel has digital down conversion to extend the recording times even longer, up to hundreds of seconds, by selectively lowering the bandwidth.

The CS9000 system’s application software supports advanced communication testing and parameterization. The BSA analyzer control software supports analog/digital demodulation, pulse (RADAR) and full coherent multi-dimensional signal parameterization. For waveform analysis, the system must capture, process and display waveforms in the time, frequency and modulation domains.

Signal Safari 2010™ is the controlling software suite that supports the system’s advanced multi-domain analysis and data generation for wireless communication R&D, RF system testing, complex signal analysis, and satellite communication link testing. The componentized analysis modules perform Spectrum analysis, ACPR, channel power, digital demodulation, carrier/sym estimation, gain/phase analysis, AM/FM demodulation. The software, which can be used stand alone as an analysis tool, includes an improved graphical user interface that allows users to generate results more quickly for both analysis and operations and can be expanded to handle custom formats and displays.

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