Test Set Exercises Radios to 3 GHz

June 30, 2014
This radio test set offers a simplified control menu and versatile signal generation for evaluating telecommunications equipment at bandwidths to 20 MHz.
Radio-based equipment operating through 3 GHz is expanding into many different markets, creating a growing demand for maintenance and service for this radio equipment. Fortunately, Rohde & Schwarz has squeezed the equivalent of a measurement laboratory, with analyzer, power meter, and test signal sources, into its R&S CMA180 radio test set. It can check and maintain microwave radios from 100 kHz to 3 GHz by generating test signals with bandwidths as wide as 20 MHz, passing them through the equipment or radio under test, and then evaluating the returns at power levels as high as 150 W through 3 GHz. All this performance is packed into a housing light enough for portability but with an option for rack mounting in a standard 19-in. equipment enclosure.

The R&S CMA180 radio test set offers the flexibility of an integrated arbitrary waveform generator that can produce different types of radio test signals under local or remote control. It generates signals from 0.1 MHz to 3 GHz with 1-Hz frequency resolution, and can produce signals with amplitude modulation (AM), frequency modulation (FM), phase modulation, and single-sideband (SSB) modulation. These test signals are clean and stable, with less than -130 dBc/Hz phase noise in a 1-Hz bandwidth offset 10 kHz from carriers of 0.1 to 30 MHz, less than -113 dBc/Hz offset 10 kHz from 30 to 890 MHz, and less than -110 dBc/Hz offset 10 kHz from 890 to 3000 MHz. Test-signal output levels can be set with 0.01 dB resolution across wide output-level ranges. From 0.1 to 30.0 MHz, the output level range is -120 to + 8 dBm; from 30 to 2000 MHz, it is -120 to +10 dBm; and from 2000 to 3000 MHz, the output level range is -112 to +5 dBm. The output level uncertainty is less than 1.5 dB at any power setting and frequency.

The test set also includes a large touchscreen and straightforward control menu to simplify testing and setup. The arbitrary waveform generator can create signals with a wide range of modulation types as well as signals with interference and other impediments for testing equipment under realistic signal environments. The radio test set has an integrated sequencer to configure and manage automatic test sequences to simplify repetitive measurements.

The R&S CMA180 provides a number of different input-power ports for sending test signals to its internal signal analyzer and power meter, with the RF COM port capable of handling 100 W continuous-wave (CW) power and 150 W peak power across the full frequency range when equipped with a high-power attenuator. Option power-meter sensors are available for linear power measurements. The test set measures just 14.19 × 7.69 × 13.82 in. (360.5 × 195.4 × 351 mm) and weighs about 24 lb (10.9 kg).

Rohde & Schwarz USA, Inc., 6821 Benjamin Franklin Dr., Columbia, MD 21046; (410) 910-7800; fax: (410) 910-7801; e-mail: [email protected];

About the Author

Jack Browne | Technical Contributor

Jack Browne, Technical Contributor, has worked in technical publishing for over 30 years. He managed the content and production of three technical journals while at the American Institute of Physics, including Medical Physics and the Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. He has been a Publisher and Editor for Penton Media, started the firm’s Wireless Symposium & Exhibition trade show in 1993, and currently serves as Technical Contributor for that company's Microwaves & RF magazine. Browne, who holds a BS in Mathematics from City College of New York and BA degrees in English and Philosophy from Fordham University, is a member of the IEEE.

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