Millimeter wave (mmWave) radio heads connected to National Instruments PXI signal transceiver.

National Instruments Introduced mmWave Test Solution

  • National Instruments (NI) announced the mmWave Vector Signal Transceiver (VST) for testing 5G mmWave RFIC transceivers and power amplifiers.
  • This product was demonstrated at NIWeek 2019 in multi-site production test configurations for packaged part and wafer-level test and in validation test configurations using over-the-air measurements.

NI’s solutions use the mmWave VST, which combines an RF signal generator, an RF signal analyzer and integrated switching with 1 GHz of instantaneous bandwidth at frequencies up to 44 GHz. In addition to existing PXI-based characterization systems in the lab, this instrument natively integrates into the NI Semiconductor Test System (STS) for deployment in high-volume manufacturing applications.

5G mmWave STS configurations support up to eight mmWave VST instruments, with integrated IF capabilities, and up to 72 mmWave ports in a tester configuration that is optimized for EVM performance.

This product features several innovations to address the test requirements of 5G mmWave devices. The new calibrated integrated switching for up to 32 channels enables improved accuracy of beamforming and phased array measurements without additional infrastructure.

The modular head design delivers appropriate measurements while preserving forward compatibility with future 5G bands. Engineers can simultaneously perform measurements at both 5-21 GHz and 23-44 GHz.