R&S Introduces Modular Probe System for Signal Measurements up to 9 GHz

9 GHz ProbeRohde & Schwarz has introduced a modular probe system for precised signal measurements up to 9 GHz. The new R&S RT-ZM probe system used in combination with a R&S oscilloscope is an excellent solution for easily and precisely measuring fast signals. It offers a maximum bandwidth of up to 9 GHz; a DC offset range of ±16 V and a Multi-Mode function that allows users to switch between test modes without re-contacting.

The modular broadband probe system from R&S ensures that optimum contact is made with the DUT. It provides a high dynamic range and an extremely low input capacitance of 32 femtofarad to 521 femtofarad up into the GHz range depending on the tip and test mode. As a result, the test signal is exposed to minimal load and distortion from the probe tip. The R&S RT-ZM system consists of the R&S RT ZM15/30/60/90 amplifier modules with 1.5 GHz to 9 GHz bandwidth plus various swappable R&S RT-ZMA tips and tip modules.

The biggest upgrade in the modular broadband probes is the Multimode Function. With this feature, users can switch between the various test modes: differential, common mode, single-ended P and single-ended N. A single contact on the DUT is therefore sufficient for comprehensive analysis and a new contact with the DUT is not required. Test time and the risk of improper contacting are reduced, providing consistent test results.

The R&S RT-ZM amplifier module with unique DC characteristics

The core of the system is the Amplifier Module. The user can connect the module to a R&S oscilloscope via the R&S probe interface. It is suitable for bandwidths in the range of 1.5 GHz to 9 GHz. The attenuation factor can be set to 2:1 or 10:1 with a dynamic range of ±0.5 V or ±2.5 V. The mixed signal ASICs developed by Rohde & Schwarz offer outstanding RF characteristics and a unique DC characteristic with an exceedingly low temperature drift. The module also offers a large DC offset range of -16 V to +16 V, making it possible to analyze small signal details with maximum resolution, even at high voltages.

Another convenient feature of the amplifier module is the R&S ProbeButton. Users can configure the function assigned to this button directly on the oscilloscope. They can, for example, configure it to switch between test modes, to start and stop measurements or to document measurements. The amplifier module's integrated R&S ProbeMeter delivers precision voltage measurements independently of the oscilloscope. The DC components of a test signal can be determined in parallel to the oscilloscope measurement. The R&S ProbeMeter has an accuracy of 0.05 percent with a dynamic range of ±7 V.

To make contact with the DUT, the R&S RT-ZM modular probe system can be equipped with suitable tip modules: modules with solder-in tips or pin connectors, spring-loaded tips and an SMA module. The R&S RT-ZMA11, with a temperature range of -55 °C to +125 °C, is ideal for measurements in a climatic chamber.

The probe system is designed for use with R&S RTE and R&S RTO oscilloscopes. The system was officially presented in Europe for the first time at the embedded world 2017 trade fair in Nuremberg.