A software option adds nonlinear vector network analyzer (NVNA) capability to Agilent Technologies' PNA-X microwave network analyzer. With minimal external hardware requirements, the Agilent NVNA software effectively converts a 4-port PNA-X into a nonlinear analyzer. It features nonlinear component characterization, new nonlinear scattering parameters, and nonlinear pulse envelope domain capabilities.

Tools specifically designed to make nonlinear measurements are required to accurately characterize the behavior of active devices, particularly high-power amplifiers and frequency doublers. One of the NVNA's key features is its ability to determine the calibrated amplitude and cross-frequency relative phase of measured spectra from 10 MHz to 26.5 GHz. Component characterization is enabled by measuring and displaying both the amplitude and phase of the full spectrafundamental, harmonics, and cross-frequency productsin the PNA-X network analyzer. Data can be displayed in time, frequency, power, or user-defined custom domains.

Another of the NVNA's key features is its ability to provide nonlinear scattering parameters called X-parameters. Such functionality extends linear scattering parameters into the nonlinear operating region and enables an accurate portrayal of both nonlinear device and cascaded nonlinear device behavior using measurement-based data.

The NVNA also provides a nonlinear pulse-envelope domain measurement, which enables researchers to gain a deeper understanding of the memory effects exhibited by their devices by displaying the harmonic pulse envelopes. Both the amplitude and phase of the pulse can be displayed in the time domain.

The Agilent nonlinear vector network analyzer options are available now. Pricing starts at $56,000.

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