Ultra-wide bandwidth spectrum analyzer

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Test and measurement specialist Rohde & Schwarz has announced an upgrade to its FSW signal and spectrum analyzer to support an 8.3GHz internal analysis bandwidth. According to the company, this offers an unequaled dynamic range and sensitivity. It notes that this update will especially benefit design engineers developing latest radar and wireless communications technologies.

Covering an input frequency range of up to 90GHz, the device’s applications include pulse measurements of A&D radar systems, satellite payload testing and amplifier pre-distortion tests. The instrument also covers chirp analysis for automotive radar and research on the next generation of wireless communication.

The company explains that the trend toward higher signal bandwidth continues in virtually all high-frequency applications. In radar technology, for example, wider bandwidths lead to better range resolution for object detection. When developing and verifying both radar systems and radar jammer systems, wideband acquisition makes it possible to analyze frequency hops in detail while examining different radar systems operating at different frequencies.

Increased bandwidths are the norm also in wireless communications technology, with every new technology generation requiring ever higher data throughput. For instance, the IEEE 802.11ay standard for wi-fi supports channel bonding, which leads to signals with bandwidths greater than 8GHz. Suitable wideband T&M equipment is also needed for upcoming gigabit communications sub-THz bands, such as D-Band and G-Band, which are often named as potential frequency ranges for a future 6G wireless communication standard.

For these ultra-wideband systems, signal analysis to date has been possible via a workaround only. For example, ultra-wideband signal analysis made use of signal and spectrum analyzers as wideband downconverters. The downconverted signals were fed into an oscilloscope, digitized and fed back to the analyzer.

The company claims that its latest solution offers far higher signal quality and sensitivity in a user-friendly, one-box solution – combined with fully featured and signal analysis capabilities that also offer spectrum analysis functionalities.

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