Aeroflex Enters U.S. ATE Market With Versatile 5800 Series PCB Tester
WICHITA, KS-November 14, 2006-Building on its well-established European Automated Test Equipment (ATE) business, Aeroflex today announced it will begin selling into the U.S. ATE market, starting with the 5800 series multi-configuration, multi-function PCB test system. Launched in November 2005 in Europe, the 5800 series has proven itself as a flexible solution that meets the demands of today's rapidly evolving PCB industry and can be easily upgraded to satisfy future requirements as they emerge. "The versatile 5800 series enables users to integrate hardware with commercial off-the-shelf and PXI instrumentation from third party suppliers, allowing one machine to be cost effectively configured to any test environment," said Simon Dawe, product manager, Aeroflex. "Aeroflex's ATE offering is unique because it's a comprehensive solution. It provides customers with the complete package-products, applications, service and support, something you can't get from other U.S. companies." In addition to the 5800 series, Aeroflex offers a variety of ATE solutions that have achieved great success in automotive safety and medical testing applications throughout Europe. The automotive applications involve testing airbag controllers, braking control systems, telematic and night vision units, occupancy safety sensors and steering wheel electronics and other automotive safety equipment. Medical applications include testing glucose meters, medication pumps, blood monitors and other medical equipment. New Features of 5800 Series Enhance Functionality To further increase its functionality and adaptability new capabilities have been added to the 5800 series: Boundary Scan lets the user observe and control the boundary pins of a JTAG compatible device via software. This capability enables in-circuit testing without the need for a bed-of-nails in-circuit test equipment. Q-Test allows integrated circuit devices (analog or digital) plus connectors to be tested for pin connectivity without detailed information on the device under test. In practice, only pin list data is required to generate, debug and test, even for high pin-out devices. PXI software wrapper tool allows PXI cards to be quickly and easily integrated into the Aeroflex software environment without .NET assemblies. Not just restricted to PXI cards, this tool can be used for most instrument drivers including DLLs. About the 5800 Series The 5800 series is a highly flexible and scaleable combinational PCB testing platform. It features an open hardware and software architecture and reconfigurable pinface styles to give users the ability to combine low-cost analog in-circuit testing with a maximum of 3456 test points, high-integrity functional testing and systems test all within a single test environment. This saves floor space, reduces board-handling damage and lowers the cost of test. With the core hardware architecture based on a PXI backplane and Aeroflex's own internal bus providing high-speed signal integrity, users have the opportunity to create versatile test scenarios based on the combined use of 5800 series instrument cards, Aeroflex PXI instrument, third party PXI cards and external instrumentation. This enables existing test applications to be simply and easily migrated to the 5800 series platform as required. From a software perspective, the 5800 series includes a completely new integrated test environment featuring Assisted Program Generation software. The software environment is completely .NET compatible ensuring that test programs already written for TestStand or LabView can be easily implemented on the 5800 Series and avoids the need to retrain test engineers as they can utilize their existing programming skills. Different test environments have different signal integrity requirements when connected to the unit under test. To address these differing requirements, the 5800 Series can be supplied with almost any interface from Virginia Panel to a cabled system. The 5800 series can also be used to undertake parallel testing of either two boards of the same type to reduce board handling time or two different boards at the same time. Available in Three Body Styles to Fit Any Test Environment Three different body styles make up the 5800 series-floor standing (5850), benchtop (5820) and rack-mount (5830). Each body style has a common core of 21-slot rack, power and utility cards. The floor standing system is ergonomically angled horizontally and has a bed-of-nails style interface to the fixture. A mechanical locking mechanism pulls the fixture down on to the interface. An independent dual-well vacuum control connects the test subject to the fixture. The floor standing system has three programmable user supplies each capable of providing up to 30V at 3A or 15V at 5A. The benchtop system provides the same core system in a lower cost package with the Aeroflex instruments cards interfaced to the test fixture by means of interconnecting cabling. The rack-mount version builds the core system in a standard 19-inch rack for further test flexibility. The Aeroflex instrument cards can be cabled to an industry standard interface of the customer's choice and further integrated with additional test resources not available in PXI format. There will initially be three 5800 series instrument cards available with more under development. These include a Multi-function Card providing two channel reference generator, two channel differential voltmeter, programmable resistance, programmable capacitance, current to voltage conversion and guard amplifier; a Test Point Relay Card with 192 pinface test points for switching between both the pinface and system buses; and a Multi-voltage Source Card which provides a higher output voltage and current than standard PXI cards - two at +/- 20VDC and 200mA and up to 16 channels at +/- 10VDC and 15mA. Various Aeroflex PXI instrument cards are available including the Aeroflex 3000 Series comprising modules and associated software applications for RF signal generation and RF signal analysis. Superior Service and Support In an ATE environment, system uptime is key to ensure success and profitability. Aeroflex demonstrates commitment to its customers' success by providing superior local support for its U.S. ATE products out of its facility in Wichita, KS. To provide local applications development support, Aeroflex partners with Metrikos, a Boston-based company. Availability and Pricing The 5800 series with Boundary Scan, Q-Test and the PXI Software Wrapper tool will be available for order on November 14. Typical delivery will be 4 weeks from receipt of order. Pricing starts from $45,000 (U.S.).