Smarter Micro has selected Agilent Technology’s PXIe modular vector signal test solution to accelerate the development of its latest reconfigurable multimode, multiband power amplifier. Smarter Micro is a fabless semiconductor company that designs and develops radio frequency (RF) integrated circuits for the communications industry. The company is using Agilent’s test solutions in the design of its new S308 power amplifier, which significantly reduces the complexity of the fourth-generation mobile design.
To achieve multimode hybrid networking and seamless mobile roaming, mobile device manufacturers must meet the telecom operator’s multimode and multi-frequency specifications. Smarter Micro is addressing this need by using Agilent’s modular vector signal test solutions in the development of its multimode multiband RF frontend OMNI-Smart platform and the S308 reconfigurable multimode multiband power amplifier (MMPA). The S308 covers the full frequency bands from 698 MHz to 2690 MHz and is able to support UMTS, TD-SCDMA, FDD LTE and TD-LTE standards.
“The speed, flexibility and accuracy of Agilent’s PXIe modular power amplifier test solutions helped us accelerate our multiband multimode power amplifier S308 development,” said Guoyang Wang, Smarter Micro marketing vice president. “Agilent’s professional technical support was critical in the delivery of our OMNI-Smarter, the reconfigurable multimode multiband power amplifier, which we believe will be the revolutionary RF front-end solution in the 4G era.”
The full-frequency MMPA is designed to significantly reduce the mobile radio-frequency design complexity and development cycle, thereby reducing the total solution cost. However, multimode and multiband brings additional test challenges, such as longer test times during the product development, verification and manufacturing stages.
Smarter Micro used Agilent’s PXIe modular vector signal evaluation system solution during design verification of the S308 power amplifier. The system included the Agilent M9381A PXIe vector signal generator, M9391A PXIe vector signal analyzer, and automatic fast measurement software with frequency support up to 6 GHz and 160 MHz analysis bandwidth.
The Agilent test solution reduced the verification test times by enabling power servos to converge faster with outstanding linearity, repeatability and absolute amplitude accuracy. The test speed exceeded previous test instruments used and accelerated multiband, multimode and many other test evaluation requirements. In addition to design verification, the fast and accurate PXIe modular power amplifier test solution was suitable for high-volume production.
“It is rewarding to see our PXIe modular solution successfully implemented in Smarter Micro’s latest power amplifier development,” said Mario Narduzzi, Modular Solutions marketing manager, Agilent. “Our industry expertise, measurement science, test innovation and hardware and software product portfolios are all designed to support our customers to accelerate their product development and market delivery.”
Agilent recently announced the M9393A PXIe performance vector signal analyzer (VSA), which offers speed (up to 27GHz) and accuracy previously unseen in modular instrumentation. Agilent’s new 89600 VSA software stepped spectrum capability enables the M9393A to measure across 27 GHz in less than one second and with 10 kHz resolution bandwidth. This allows for fast measurements of harmonics, spurs and intermodulation.