Agilent Technologies Inc. introduced a microwave signal generator with ultra-high output power capability that breaks the 1 W output barrier. The Agilent PSG E8257D signal generator option 521 delivers from +24 to +28 dBm specified output power over a frequency range of 250 MHz to 20 GHz (useable down to 10 MHz) and eliminates the need for additional hardware such as amplifiers, couplers and detectors.

"Agilent introduced the world's first integrated vector signal generator that delivered up to 44 GHz and the first analog signal generator up to 67 GHz," said Andy Botka, Vice President and General Manager of Agilent's Signal Sources division. "Our new microwave signal generator continues the tradition of accelerating innovation in RF and microwave test applications requirements for aerospace, defense and communications."

A common limitation for virtually all microwave signal generators is that specified output power is typically limited to less than +25 dBm. For applications that require specified output power higher than +25 dBm, such as TWT amplifier testing and ATE/antenna test configurations (where signal insertion loss is high due to switch routings and long cable lengths), extra hardware such as amplifiers, couplers and detectors are needed. The PSG with option 521 eliminates that requirement and the costs associated with that extra hardware.

With typical maximum unleveled output power exceeding 1 W (greater than +30 dBm) over a large portion of the frequency range, users and UUTs (units under test) can be protected from high power accidents with a new, adjustable RF output hardware power clamp. Able to be set from +15 to +33 dBm at the output of the PSG, the adjustable power clamp works with internal and external leveling configurations. For higher power, narrow frequency range applications, the maximum RF output clamp setting of +33 dBm provides access to option 521's maximum available unleveled output power.