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Testing Cable and Filter Transmission Properties

Anritsu MS46121A210 November 2015 – Anritsu introduces a scalar transmission option for its MS46121A PC-controlled ShockLine 1-port USB Vector Network Analyzers (VNAs) that transforms multiple MS46121A models into a simple scalar system. This new option enables scalar measurements to be made between MS46121A VNAs in either a one-to-one (1 to 1) or one-to-many (1 to n) configuration, creating a flexible and affordable method of conducting magnitude-only transmission measurements for a wide variety of applications, including manufacturing test and student education.

Providing both the (1 to 1) and (1 to n) setups in the MS46121A VNAs creates a robust method of performing parallel and multi-port testing of devices under test (DUTs) over four channels. In a (1 to 1) setup, up to two scalar transmission measurements can be made in parallel using four channels. This configuration is particularly well suited for cable testing, as it creates fast throughput for cable loss measurements.

The (1 to n) scalar measurement configuration allows one MS46121A to serve as a source that is connected to up to three other MS46121A VNAs that act as receivers. A key benefit is that multiple MS46121A VNAs can emulate limited multi-port functionality with the convenience of adjusting the ports to accommodate different DUT geometries and setups. This configuration is particularly well suited for validating multi-port filters and multiband cell phone antennas, as transmission measurements through various ports can be made quickly and inexpensively.

The MS46121A series of 1-port USB VNAs offers models with frequency ranges of 40 MHz to 4 GHz and 150 kHz to 6 GHz. The MS46121A provides performance and accuracy for 1-port measurements in a low-cost and space-saving solution that is small enough to directly connect to the DUT. Up to 16 independent MS46121A VNAs can be operated in parallel from the same computer running ShockLine software. This enables true parallel multi-site testing of 1-port devices, improving throughput over traditional single VNA and switch matrix test solutions.

The MS46121A series is part of the ShockLine family of low-cost VNAs for test applications up to 43.5 GHz. There are five series of instruments with 15 different frequency ranges in 1-, 2-, and 4-port models available in multiple form factors and with LAN or USB interfaces to fit any testing environment. They are ideal to economically test passive devices in cost-sensitive manufacturing, engineering, and education applications.

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