With commercial 5G NR deployments below 6 GHz on the horizon, engineers are actively developing sub-6 GHz 5G RF components and devices. The accelerated pace of 5G standardization is driving intense pressure to bring products to market quickly. The sub-6 GHz 5G NR reference system from NI is a cost-effective and high-performance option for test that helps engineers quickly characterize their designs and more easily transition from R&D to production test environments.
The new reference test system from NI is well-suited for testing new wideband RFICs, especially those operating in the 3.3 to 4.2 GHz and 4.4 to 5.0 GHz bands. Engineers can test devices operating with 400 MHz of continuous signal bandwidth and beyond with the PXIe-5840 Vector Signal Transceiver (VST), which includes 1 GHz of instantaneous signal generation and analysis bandwidth up to 6 GHz. With the NI VST, the system delivers residual EVM performance better than 0.32 percent (-50 dB) for 100 MHz NR signals along with faster measurement speed.
A critical component of this system is NI-RFmx NR measurement software, which has evolved in conjunction with the 3GPP specification. The latest version of NI-RFmx NR measurement software offers 5G NR waveforms and measurement capability compliant with the first official specification of 3GPP Release 15 for non-standalone NR, which empowers engineers to test both OFDMA and DFT-s-OFDM carrier aggregated waveforms with flexible subcarrier spacing from 15 kHz to 120 kHz.
“Our new offerings for 5G test are just the latest in a long line of NI innovations helping engineers bring 5G technologies to market more quickly,” said Jason White, director of RF and wireless test at NI. “By combining high-performance RF measurement capability with extremely fast and flexible measurement software, we are helping engineers reduce time-to-market and measurement correlation time by reusing the same instrumentation and measurement science in multiple phases of product development.”