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How to Make High-Frequency Balun Measurements

In this video, we will demonstrate how to use a VNA to make high frequency balun measurements with a CMT VNA.
Adaptive Radome Diagnostic System with 1-Port VNA

Adaptive Radome Diagnostic System with 1-Port VNA

Our integration partner Compass Technology Group’s Adaptive Radome Diagnostic System (ARDS) features in a video about the Air Force ManTech program. The Air Force is able to test the effectiveness of radome repairs, ensuring they are fully operational before taking the aircraft back into the field. This reduces the need to work further on the radome repairs after taking the aircraft out. Keeping the radomes functioning properly is crucial to the safety of the pilots in these aircraft. At time marker 1:48, you can see the ARDS in action with the 1-Port VNA as a part of the system capturing the reflectivity measurements of the radome.

“The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”

How Do I Access Software and Documentation for my VNA?

If you are looking for software or documentation for your VNA, you can find it in several ways. If you locate your VNA on the website, you can find these items under the software/documentation tab on the product pages. If you hover over the support tab on the navigation bar, you will see pages to Download Software, Download Files, Download Documentation, and about Automation. Watch the video to learn more.
automatic fixture removal fixture characteristics requirements

Fixture Characteristic Requirements for Automatic Fixture Removal Plug-in

Brain Walker gives an introduction to automatic fixture removal software plug-in (AFR). He discusses how to use the software, what kind of fixtures are and are not suitable for de-embedding with the software. For this setup, we use a C1220 2-Port 20 GHz VNA, as higher frequency leads to higher resolution with the AFR software. To demonstrate measurements, we use both a high-grade fixture and a homemade fixture with end-launch SMA connectors rated to about 3-6 GHz.

mmWave Measurements with a Low Frequency VNA

Using the right equipment for the right measurement is crucial to getting accurate results. Precision millimeter-wave (mmWave) measurements normally require a VNA with built-in capability, or mmWave extenders to augment the frequency range. This equipment may be used to evaluate mmWave mixers, which are commonly used to up-convert or down-convert 5G signals back and forth from baseband frequencies.

The CobaltFx mmWave frequency extenders operate in conjunction with a Copper Mountain Technologies 9 or 20 GHz Cobalt series VNA. The S5243 Compact VNA supports measurements from 10 MHz to 44 GHz with 2.4mm NMD connectors, which can be used to make measurements without an extender. Brian discusses using a lower frequency VNA to perform mmWave mixer measurements using two mixers driving the base-band ports. He goes over the use of the image filter, how the reference mixer is characterized, the creation of de-embedding data, and introduces example measurements. He then covers measurement accuracy, along with a practical demonstration of the concepts discussed.

This video demonstrates vector mixer calibration to evaluate an mmWave mixer. The expectation of error on conversion loss measurements of a MUT (mixer under test) is approximated from the formula, which is then used to create the reference mixer de-embedding file. Conversion loss of the reference mixer should be 10 dB or less to measure the conversion loss of the MUT with reasonable accuracy, as conversion loss above 16 dB or so would give poor results. The device used in the practical demonstration is the S5065 6.5 GHz VNA, along with a 2520 2-port 20 GHz ACM (automatic calibration module).

How Do I Use an Automatic Calibration Module (ACM) to Calibrate my VNA?

An ACM, or Automatic Calibration Module, is a fully automatic, USB-controlled, and powered, electronic calibration module. It reduces the number of steps required in the calibration process. We have both 2-port and 4-port ACMs available. Using an Automatic Calibration Module greatly simplifies the calibration process by eliminating the numerous connections to each standard and reduces possible errors from those extra connections and steps. Learn all about using an ACM from the video above.

How Do I Download the CMT VNA Software?

Copper Mountain Technologies provides a variety of Vector Network Analyzers and VNA software to accommodate a wide range of test and measurement needs.

Our product line is broadly divided into 4 types: 1-port VNAs or reflectometers using RVNA software, 2-port 1-path VNAs make S11 and S21 measurements only using TRVNA software, instruments capable of full 2-port measurements (there are the M, S, SC, and Cobalt series VNAs) using S2VNA software, and full 4-port VNAs using S4VNA software.

To download the software, go to

Watch the video for full details on how to download and use the VNA software.

How Do I Connect the Frequency Extension Modules to the VNA?

The addition of four cables for each extender can make connections to the frequency extension modules confusing. Watch the video for step-by-step instructions on connecting the frequency extension modules to the VNA.

If you are using VDI extenders and the booster module, that adds even more complexity. Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions on connecting and calibrating VDI frequency extension modules.

How Do I Automate a CMT VNA?

It is very easy to automate CMT VNAs. CMT VNAs support a huge list of available SCPI commands. Watch the video for some beginning examples on automation. If you want more information on automating your vector network analyzer measurements, you can watch our VNA 101 Bootcamp webinar on automation here or read our guide for automating CMT VNAs here.