- Buyers Guide
The IEEE 2011 International Symposium on Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) took place August 14-18 in Long Beach, CA. About 2000 EMC professionals from around the world gathered to share the latest information on EMC, educate people in the field and network with fellow industry members. Microwave Journal covered the RF and microwave companies exhibiting at the show by finding out what new products were introduced, shooting a few video demos and taking some pictures.
Long Beach is a great venue with the convention center straddled by two nice hotels right along the harbor. The Queen Mary is across the harbor and the aquarium is a very short walk away. There are many restaurants and shops along the harbor walk, including a lighthouse picnic area. Microwave Journal visited most of the RF/microwave companies exhibiting at the show. Here are some of the product highlights we found while roving around the show floor and a few video demos.
AR was front and center as the company always is at this show. AR did not disappoint with the display of its new DER2018 digital emissions receiver that covers 20 Hz to 18 GHz with 140 MHz instantaneous bandwidth. It complies with CISPR-16-1-1 edition 2.2 Oct 2007. AR showed how it can scan 9 kHz to 30 MHz in 2 seconds and process 30 to 1000 MHz in 7 seconds with all CISPR detectors. The 3D graphing software that goes with it is very impressive for visualizing signals. See our video demo of this system. AR also had a daily giveaway that included TVs, iPads and iPods, attracting large crowds.
Rohde and Schwarz had many of its systems on display. A couple to note were the FSVR real time spectrum analyzer and RTO series oscilloscopes. The FSVR adds real time analysis covering 10 kHz to 30 or 40 GHz. Their touch screens are very intuitive and allow the easy display of up to 4 types of scans. It also provides spectrograph capabilities that enable better visualization and analysis of signals. It provides 10,000 traces/second without any gaps and includes masking capabilities along with all the communications standards. Rohde and Schwarz also showed us its RTO series oscilloscopes – see our video demo reviewing the features of this instrument.
Agilent noted its new N9038A MXE EMI receiver with coverage to 26.5 GHz. It also includes a spectrum analyzer so analysis can be done on the same instrument. It also has a spectrograph mode for more intuition into signal analysis. It also features a 20 minute gapless data recording mode to catch intermittent signals. See our video demo of this instrument.
Aeroflex showed us its new S-Series fast, low noise signal generator covering 10 kHz to 3 or 6 GHz. It has +13 dB output (option to 20 dB) with fast settling time of 100 micro seconds. It has a noise figure of -135 dBc/Hz at 1 GHz (20 kHz offset). New families of this product will be releasing soon, including PXI variations.
Teseq always has a major presence at this show and was highlighting its CBA series amplifiers with frequency ranges from 10 KHz to 6 GHz and power levels from 12 to 1000 W. When fitted with the USB port, the amplifiers can be switched on remotely from standby to operation mode and be controlled by Teseq’s Compliance 5 test software to monitor status, local lockout, interlock and fault conditions. Teseq has upgraded its Compliance 5 test software recently and added a Compliance 5 EMC Test Software DO-160 Module for Aerospace Applications.
ETS Lindgren always has a major presence at the show and provides a wide variety of products from antennas to test systems to absorber materials to testing services. A few products to note are GTEM test cells for RF/emissions/immunity testing for design, qualification and compliance. The company offers a broad range of test and measurement antennas and I always like the unique shapes and designs it has on display. They also displayed various microwave absorber materials for all applications and frequencies.
TDK Epcos had a large presence, including various materials, components and antennas. The company was showing off some newer absorber materials, including hollow crossed wedge hybrid EM absorber and hollow windmill shape hybrid EM absorber. It also provides flexible suppression sheets used in NFC and other applications (Flex Shield) and Epcos was showing off power line filters for shielded rooms and secure areas.
CST announced the release of transient bidirectional co-simulation between cable currents and the electromagnetic fields in the surrounding space for CST STUDIO SUITE™ version 2011 SP5 at the show. In the past, modelers have often simplified the field/cable interaction problem by assuming one-way coupling, but this may produce inaccurate results. CST has overcome this limitation by tightly integrating CST CABLE STUDIO (CST CS) with the powerful 3D transient solvers in CST MICROWAVE STUDIO (CST MWS). This enables true transient bi-directional field/cable coupling to be simulated for complex cable bundles routed through complex 3D environments, such as electronics enclosures, aircraft, automobiles etc. Accurate analysis can be performed efficiently, despite the huge difference in scale between cable cross-section dimensions and overall system/vehicle dimensions.
Ansoft/Ansys were showing off its various software packages. Although it was not announcing anything at the show, the company has new releases and features coming out very soon. So stay tuned. Ansoft/Ansys was providing information about HFSS, Ansoft Designer and their many other offerings.
FEKO recently announced Suite 6.1 last month. This release is packed with new features and comes with a completely revised version of CADFEKO. The main revision was aimed at improving the usability of the feature-packed user interface. This was done through the introduction of a ribbon style menu, which reduces clutter and represents the typical workflow. Many CAD and meshing features have been added or extended. The most significant and unique feature of Suite 6.1 is the introduction of a method to analyze cable bundles in a complex environment. With the common MTL method, the cables need to run parallel and close to a continuous ground plane. With the new combined MoM/MTL method, this restriction has been removed, allowing an arbitrary cable path and no restrictions on or need for a ground plane. This will extend the current capabilities of EMC engineers to solve general complex cable problems.
Instruments for Industry (IFI) was showing off its new IFI S61-50 Series broadband GaN testing amplifier provides a minimum of 50 W of solid-state CW power for the 1 to 6 GHz frequency range (single band). This GaN amplifier is available in many power levels from 5 through 250 W. IFI's broadband GaN Amplifiers use a very compact design, 5.25”H x 19”W x 24”D. The 50 W ultrawide-band compact GaN Amplifier design is ideal for the various test requirements for EMI compliance testing, EMC testing and all lab and test installations requiring wide-bandwidth technology.
Miteq was featuring fiber optic links of all types for low loss links that are immune to interference. They are well suited for antenna/oscillator remoting and interfacility links. They also provide optical transmitters and receivers.
CPI had many products on display, including its 18 to 22 GHz, 250 W amplifiers. CPI offers a wide variety of amplifiers, including many for the satellite communications market in addition to the EMC industry. The company has several divisions offering all types of components, sub-assemblies and systems.
Ophir had an impressive family of amplifiers that operate from 80 to 1000 MHz with high powers ranging from 200 to 2000 W. They utilize LDMOS solid-state technology and are available at a low price point. The 200 W model is $15,000 and the 2000 W model is $99,000. Custom and COTS-adapted units are available.
ARC offers a variety of materials and I liked its Engineer’s Survival Kit with EMI/RF absorber solutions. ARC's family of low density, high loss flexible EMI absorbers are designed to solve a wide range of interference control problems easily, quickly and cost effectively. By varying the thickness and carbon loading levels of these uniformly loaded foam sheets, ARC’s foam absorbers can be frequency-tuned for specific applications. Also, it makes Wave-X z, which is an EMI/RF absorbing cable coating designed to serve many functions and solve a multitude of problematic cable interference issues.
We typically do not see 3M in our market, but the company offers a wide variety of materials for microwave applications. It was showing off shielding, absorbing, grounding and bonding technology for electronics. These include EMI shielding tapes, MEI grounding adhesives and gaskets, EMI absorbers, flux directional materials and transparent conductors. One interesting product was its Twin Axial cable that performs to 12 GHz with low loss and no suckout. This product is a low profile ribbon type cabling that maintains performance even when bent tight at 90 degrees.
Testequipmentrepair.com provides various repair and calibration services from a state-of-the-art facility in Alpharetta, GA, and it plans to open a new location in CA. Custom service agreement options provide the solutions required to support nearly any military organization, prime contractor, service industry, or commercial manufacturing test equipment support challenge.
Emerson & Cuming Microwave produces ECCOSORB® MF-PPS, which is a series of rigid, magnetically loaded injection moldable materials. This type of absorber is widely used for attenuators, waveguide and coaxial terminations, and cavity resonance absorption.
The social events included a reception at the aquarium and a gala dinner aboard the Queen Mary. I was lucky enough to be able to attend the gala event and was not disappointed as we were able to wander around the royal ship for drinks and then were served a sit-down dinner at the stern. There were hundreds of attendees there with ship entertainers doing songs and dances from the 1940s. We look forward to the event next year in Pittsburgh, PA. We also hear it will be in Germany in a few years to stay true to its international presence.