[time-nuts] What are some cw signal Generators for ATE test?

Brooke Clarke brooke at pacific.net
Mon Jan 19 16:20:33 EST 2015

Hi Ivan:

I built a number of automated systems for microwave test, see:

It was only when testing mixers for specific spurs where we used the synthesized signal generators for low phase noise 
so that the spectrum analyzer could be used with a narrow resolution bandwidth and the known test frequency was placed 
very near the left side of the screen so only a short sweep time was needed to capture the peak.
This system would not work with an HP 8350B sweeper because of it's poor phase noise.

I did a paper design for a system that would look for spurs everywhere at very low levels, that's to say you didn't know 
in advance where they might be, for a satellite project and it turned out that the HP 70000 series spectrum analyzers 
were the fastest for that type of search.

The HP 4395A is extremely fast in it's sweep speed because all the IF processing is done in DSP, so the old analog 
coupling of sweep speed and RBW no longer applies.

The test time depends on both the phase noise of the source and the speed of the spectrum analyzer.

Mail_Attachment --
Have Fun,

Brooke Clarke
Ivan.Cousins wrote:
> time-nuts members:
> What are some signal generators for ATE test?
> Requirements:
> 100MHz to >=10GHz (higher would be better)
> Settling time less than 1mS
> Reasonable phase noise
> Cost, less than mortgaging a house.    :)
> Just a single tone that can be moved reasonably fast.
> IQ modulation not required.
> Application: Testing ICs or small RF modules.
> I do not want suggestions of how one could be built.
> I am aware of pieces that can be used to build one.
> Generally, the units that are based upon YIGs or YIG tuned filters are not fast enough.
> I am not looking for general discussions on how one could be designed or measured.
> Although, this being "time-nuts", that will probably happen anyway.    :)
> What I am looking for is one that can be purchased and be used in a test system.
> I am looking to build a list of possible instruments that can be used.
> Right now I am only looking at what is on the market for a survey.
> I am not looking for salesmen to call or write to me.
> I have done the standard google searches and looked on the usual instrument company web sites.
> Links to other surveys that are available are welcome.
> I may have missed some.
> Some instruments that I am aware of at the moment are:
> Keysight N5183B
> Rhode-Schwarz SGS100A
> Ni-PhaseMatrix USB 20GHz
> Apria Technology ULNsyn-MD20
> What are some others?
> Thank you.
> Ivan Cousins
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