Network Analyzer Continuously Calibrates Via GPS

BROMMA, SWEDEN: Time and frequency test specialist Spectracom has developed a Sync Tester/Analyzer for nextgeneration communication networks. Typically, synchronization testers are dedicated to doing tests in one type of network. Yet the new Pendulum STA-61 supports both traditional SDH/ SONET core and IP-based backhaul networks.

"We've seen a big need in the market for a portable field sync tester/analyzer able to verify the quality of synchronization clocks both in traditional SDH/SONET networks, as well as in emerging synchronized IP-based backhaul networks for mobile communication," explains Staffan Johansson, Strategic Product Manager at Spectracom.

Unlike existing synchronization testers, the STA-61 can perform self-calibration routines between measurements with the aid of an optional, integrated GPS-receiver (see figure). That receiver enables continuous calibration/adjustment of the tester's internal atomic-clock reference oscillator. An optional battery backup preserves calibration data even when external power is lost or the tester is shut down.

Users wanting to measure synchronization quality (wander) on several access points in a station can use the STA-61 to measure as many as six different test points simultaneously. Intuitive menus and a color liquid-crystal-display (LCD) touchscreen show TIE, TDEV, or MTIE results in real time. The lightweight Pendulum STA-61 features a handle that allows it to fit as carry-on luggage on aircraft. It is expected to be available in March 2011.

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