FieldFox Handheld Analyzers Education Series
Carrying Microwave Precision Into the Field
This series of application-focused webcasts will teach you how to make precise RF and microwave measurements with the new FieldFox family of microwave analyzers. Test results are comparable to that of benchtop equipment in lab as well as field installation and maintenance environments.
Correlating Microwave Measurements between Handheld and Benchtop Analyzers
2 Sessions Available on July 24, 2013 (click on time most convenient for you to register)
7:00am Pacific / 10:00am Eastern / 4:00pm Central European
10:00am Pacific / 1:00pm Eastern / 7:00pm Central European
For the first time, technology breakthroughs have enabled high-performance measurement capabilities in a handheld analyzer. High-accuracy microwave measurements of spectrum, power and frequency can quickly be made using modern all-in-one analyzers with results that correlate to benchtop instruments to within hundreths of a dB. These handheld analyzers do not require any warm-up time and using built-in calibration and automatic alignment techniques will maintain this high level of measurement accuracy across the full frequency range of the instrument and under changing environmental conditions.
During this webcast, we will discuss the capabilities of modern handheld analyzers and we will show measurement comparisons between the handheld FieldFox and several benchtop instruments including signal analyzers, power meters and vector network analyzers. We will describe the MMIC circuit technology that is the foundation of the highest performance handhelds on the market today. We will discuss the calibration and alignment techniques found in the FieldFox, namely CalReady, QuickCal and InstAlign, that provide high accuracy and repeatability in all test environments ranging from harsh outdoor conditions to indoor laboratory settings. Measurement comparisons will include amplifier gain, return loss, bandwidth, harmonics, spurious, and RF power
Techniques for Precise Interference Measurements in the Field
Original broadcast September 26, 2012
In wireless systems, interference in the wireless channel can be quite problematic, degrading the reception of desired signals. It can originate from a variety of intentional, unintentional and incidental radiators and occurs in both licensed and unlicensed spectrum. With the growing scarcity of radio frequency spectrum and ongoing efforts to improve its utilization for the highest capacity and performance (e.g., by sharing or reuse), wireless communication systems must now operate under a limited amount of radio interference. Unfortunately, as demand for spectrum increases so too does wireless system interference. As a result, the identification and reduction of interference has become absolutely essential to the proper operation of all wireless systems. Of course, testing interference in a wireless environment is no easy task, demanding new measurement techniques and placing added requirements on existing measurement instrumentation. Addressing it effectively requires an advanced measurement tool like a high-performance spectrum analyzer, to evaluate, monitor and manage the interference levels between various wireless systems. This webcast will focus on making these measurements using a high performance portable spectrum analyzer.
Techniques for Precise Cable and Antenna Measurements in the Field
Original broadcast October 24, 2012
Cable and antenna measurements are often required to verify and troubleshoot the electrical performance of RF and microwave transmission systems and antennas. Measurements are often made along the coaxial cable connecting a transmitter to its antenna and/or between an antenna and its receiver. During the installation, operation and maintenance of a telecommunication system, the connecting cables, adapters and antennas may become damaged or show reduced performance over time. Inherently, in any communication system, it becomes important to have a process and the appropriate instrumentation to verify the performance of the cables and antennas when issues are discovered at the system level.
This webcast introduces measurement and calibration techniques for cable and antenna testing (CAT) using Agilent FieldFox handheld analyzers. We will discuss a variety of measurements such as cable insertion loss, return loss, VSWR and Distance-to-Fault (DTF) testing. Antenna measurements are also discussed and several examples of return loss and antenna-to-antenna isolation will be provided.
Calibration and Alignment Techniques for Precise Field Measurements
Original broadcast November 28, 2012
Accurate network analyzer measurements typically conjure up images of equipment sitting on a lab bench with expensive calibration kits and complex calibration procedures. Today more and more technicians and engineers need to make accurate measurements in much different conditions. These measurements need to be made in harsh and remote locations such as aboard a ship or at a satellite ground station, and in much less time.
This webcast explores the techniques and instruments to make quality measurements in the field, in a short amount of time. Measurement examples are provided using the new FieldFox microwave vector network analyzer, specifically using its unique calibration capabilities referred to as CalReady and QuickCal. CalReady means the instrument is already calibrated at power on or preset and is ready to go without additional steps to calibrate. QuickCal enables users to calibrate without additional accessories such as a calibration kit.. Both CalReady and QuickCal simplify calibration – a process that used to be considered not only complex, but also cumbersome. This webcast explores how FieldFox’s CalReady and Quick Cal features help make precise measurements in the field.
Techniques for Precise Time Domain Measurements in the Field
Original broadcast January 23, 2013
High-performance communications and radar systems require a quality transmission path for the propagation of RF and microwave signals. Component and system performance is often verified by measuring the frequency response of the reflection and/or transmission properties using a vector network analyzer. If a component or portion of a system becomes damaged or was improperly tuned, a frequency response measurement will only report reduced performance and does not provide information regarding the location and type of fault along the signal path. In this case, a time domain measurement provides a superior method of locating individual discontinuities and the associated magnitude for each mismatch. Fortunately, field-ready vector network analyzers have both frequency domain and time domain capability allowing the verification and troubleshooting of the electrical performance of RF and microwave transmission systems and antennas.
This webcast introduces time domain and distance to fault (DTF) measurement techniques for identifying the location and types of discontinuities while operating in the field. We will describe the relationship between frequency domain measurements and time domain transforms and their relationships to time resolution and range. We will discuss the proper techniques for characterizing band-limited devices, such as couplers, filters, antennas and waveguide components, and wideband devices, such as cables and connectors. We will also discuss time domain “gating”, a powerful feature that effectively isolates discontinuities in the time domain just as a filter would isolate signal energy in the frequency domain. One application of gating is to examine the electrical performance of a single component or discontinuity while the device is still connected within a system.
Another example discussed in this webcast relates to gating out the effects of a single out-of-spec discontinuity thereby allowing the system performance of all the remaining components to be examined. Measurement examples will be provided using Agilent’s handheld RF and microwave FieldFox vector network analyzers (VNA) and cable and antenna test (CAT) analyzers.
Techniques for Precise Power Measurements in the Field
Original broadcast March 27, 2013
Measurement of RF and microwave signal power is a fundamental test requirement during system installation, maintenance and troubleshooting. The capability and portability of the power-measurement system is critical to fast, repeatable and accurate measurements in the field. While traditional methods of measuring power often require a power sensor cabled to a separate meter or laptop, newer methods include high performance signal analyzers with built-in power measurement capability. These portable signal analyzers have comparable measurement accuracy and dynamic range to external power sensors. Also, these analyzers do not require any warm-up time and maintain the same level of measurement accuracy across the full frequency range and with changes in temperature.
This webcast explores the various types of power sensors and signal analyzers that can precisely measure signal power while operating under harsh conditions and remote locations. Power measurements include average, peak, peak-to-average, channel and ACPR. Measurement examples include signal types such as CW, pulsed and complex modulated waveforms. Accuracy and dynamic range comparisons between power sensors and signal analyzers, such as the FieldFox handheld analyzers, will also be discussed.
WHO SHOULD VIEW THIS WEBCAST SERIES
Field Service or Installation and Maintenance Managers, Engineers or Technicians in the wireless service, military, medical or regulatory agency areas who are responsible for operating or maintaining their communication infrastructure
Tom Hoppin, Business Development Engineer, Agilent Technologies Component Test Division
Tom started his working career as an electronic aviation technician in the US Marine Corps. After his service in 1973, he joined Hewlett-Packard as a manufacturing technician. During his career at HP, he moved from manufacturing to production engineering and was promoted to engineer in 1989. Since then, he has held a number of engineering and management roles at HP and Agilent, focused on test system design and spectrum analysis. Tom retired in 2009 and has returned to Agilent as a contract application engineer, helping to launch the new FieldFox handheld analyzers. Tom enjoys woodworking, cycling and sailing.
Techniques for Precise Interference Measurements in the Field Webcast Slides
Slides from part 1 of the FieldFox Handheld Analyzers Education Series presented on September 26, 2012
Seminar Materials 2012-09-26
PDF 1.12 MB
Techniques for Precise Cable and Antenna Measurements in the Field Webcast Slides
Slides from the October 24, 2012 Webcast
Seminar Materials 2012-10-24
PDF 1.18 MB
Calibration and Alignment Techniques for Precise Field Measurements Webcast Slides
Slides from the November 28, 2012 webcast
Seminar Materials 2012-11-28
PDF 812 KB
Techniques for Precise Time Domain Measurements in the Field Webcast Slides
Slides from the January 23, 2013 webcast
Seminar Materials 2013-01-23
PDF 826 KB
Techniques for Precise Power Measurements in the Field Webcast Slides
Slides from the March 27, 2013 webcast
Seminar Materials 2013-03-27
PDF 1.86 MB