The Tektronix RSA5000 RF spectrum analyzers offer upper frequency limits of 26.5 and 15 GHz with a 110-MHz bandwidth option that brings a whole new ability to locate elusive signals (see the figure).

The spectrum analyzer is the key test instrument of the RF and microwave fields. The demand for signal analysis over a wider frequency range has triggered the development of newer and better instruments. The growth of digital RF across a wider and even crowded wireless spectrum has led to the need for signal analyzers that can capture the briefest of spectrum occurrences to ensure proper operation and to avoid interference issues.

At the same time, economic pressures have forced engineers to require a single instrument that can meet their demanding spectrum analyzer needs and be able to troubleshoot the problems unique to today’s transient, hopping signals. The test requirements for advanced smart phones as well as various aerospace and defense applications have increased the pressure for improved analysis. Tek’s 26.5-GHz and 15-GHz RSA5000 series meets these needs.

Available for the first time in a mid-range spectrum analyzer, the 110-MHz bandwidth option is especially important because many of today’s wireless communications standards require engineers to see a wider frequency range. The wider bandwidth also enables uninterrupted signal monitoring or surveillance of frequency bands of interest.

Two of the key needs in today’s wireless testing are electromagnetic interference (EMI) detection and spectrum management. With more signals occupying ever smaller band assignments, interference is a growing problem. Signal analyzers are the most useful tool for discovering EMI and fixing it. Spectrum management is also a key need with multiple radio smart phones covering ever widening frequencies. Search and scan techniques are very helpful in managing multiple devices in common bands.

Tek’s revolutionary DPX spectrum display provides an intuitive live color view of signal transients as they change over time in the frequency domain. A unique waterfall display of transients lets you find almost hidden signals and anomalies that are very difficult to find on other signal analyzers. Advanced DPX features including swept DPX, gap-free DPX spectrograms, and DPX zero span with real-time amplitude, frequency, or phase make it easy to find troublesome signals under a variety of conditions.

The RSA5000 analyzers also provide a comprehensive set of triggers essential for troubleshooting modern digital RF systems, including time-qualified power, runt, density, frequency, and frequency mask triggers. Their DPX triggers include the DPX density trigger that works on the measured frequency of occurrence. And, a “trigger on this” feature enables you to point at the signal of interest on the DPX display.

The RSA5000 analyzers speed up troubleshooting and analysis by pinpointing the root cause of problems in multiple domains. You can analyze captured data across domains at any time using correlated markers. Time-correlated measurements can be made across frequency, phase, amplitude, and modulation domains. This is ideal for signal analysis that includes frequency hopping, pulse characteristics, modulation switching, settling time, bandwidth changes, and intermittent signals.

For deep troubleshooting and analysis, you can employ data captures with SignalVu-PC software for offline analysis, helping to free up test resources. You can do extensive vector signal analysis, functional spectrum spanning, spectrogram, and RF measurements including analog modulation analysis, adjacent channel power, complementary cumulative distribution function (CCDF), occupied bandwidth plus amplitude, frequency, and phase versus time. Options for more advanced analysis functions are also available including modulation, pulse, settling time, audio, and flexible orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) measurements.

Typical specifications for the RSA5126A model include a frequency range of 1 Hz to 26.5 GHz, a displayed average noise level (DANL) at 10 kHz of –129 dBm/Hz, a DANL with optional preamp at 26 GHz of –155 dBm/Hz, phase noise at 1 GHz of –113 dBc/Hz at 10 kHz, and a bandwidth option of 110 MHz.

Meanwhile, the H500/SA2500 handheld spectrum analyzer is ideal as a primary tool for surveillance, spectrum monitoring, and interference hunting in security, military, public safety, regulatory, and commercial applications. Basic specifications include a frequency range of 10 kHz to 6.2 GHz, 20-MHz real-time bandwidth, –163-dBm/Hz DANL with preamp, –95-dBc phase noise at 10 kHz, and –70-dBc spurious free dynamic range (SFDR). The unit has built-in GPS and mapping functions as well.

The RSA5000 26.5-GHz and 15-GHz models will be available this month. Pricing starts at $47,900 for the 26.5-GHz model. The 110-MHz bandwidth option is $29,000.

Tektronix Inc.