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Tester Checks 802.11ad Radios

Millimeter-wave frequencies are finding more applications with time, from automotive electronics to emerging Fifth Generation (5G) wireless communications systems. To performance measurements at higher frequencies, visitors to the National Instruments’ booth at EDI CON 2016 had a chance to demonstrate a test system solution for a millimeter-wave IEEE 802.11ad WiGig radio.

The test system solution consists of a vector signal generator (VSG) and vector signal analyzer (VSA) operating from 55 to 68 GHz with more than 2 GHz of instantaneous bandwidth. Jin Bains, Vice-President of RF R&D at National Instruments, addresses the growing need for millimeter-wave testing: “With proposed 5G bands at 28, 38, and 73 GHz, WiGig at 60 GHz, and automotive radar at 77 GHz, millimeter wave is the next frontier of wideband instrument technology.”

The high-frequency test system provides the accuracy and speed needed by chipset developers working on millimeter-wave radios for the next generation of communications equipment. For example, Anand Iyer, Director of Millimeter-Wave Product Marketing at Broadcom Limited, noted: “NI’s developments in millimeter-wave test solutions have allowed us to address various testing challenges like reducing test costs and providing high-volume manufacturing and over-the-air test capabilities.” The test system features the flexibility to add capability as needed, using slide-in PXI modules for signal generation and analysis, in a rack-mount instrument chassis.

Demonstrations of the WiGig test system were available at EDI CON booth #313. 

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