R&S®PWC200 Plane wave converter

For 5G massive MIMO base station testing

R&S®PWC200 Plane wave converter
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R&S®PWC200 plane wave converter, application image

Key facts

  • Phased antenna array to form plane waves within a ø > 1.05 m quiet zone
  • No near-field to far-field transformation required
  • Four times smaller than CATR based systems
  • Built-in self-test features
  • For R&D and production testing

Measurements of far-field characteristics at very close distances

The R&S®PWC200 plane wave converter is uniquely designed for 5G massive MIMO base station testing solutions in R&D, quality assurance and production as well as over the air (OTA) conformance testing. It has a bidirectional array of 156 wideband Vivaldi antennas in the radiating near field (NF) of the device under test (DUT). The phased antenna array can form planar waves inside a specified quiet zone surrounding a 5G massive MIMO base station DUT for real-time radiated power and transceiver measurements (EVM, ACLR, SEM, etc.).

Features & benefits

Compact base station test system design

Far-field measurements in near-field range

The R&S®PWC200 can drastically reduce measurement distances needed for far field characterization. OTA testing of 5G massive MIMO base stations with apertures of 1 m at a frequency of 3.5 GHz is possible from a distance of just 1.5 m. By comparison, direct far field measurements require 23.5 m. The R&S®PWC200 uses less floor space in test labs and production facilities without compromising measurement accuracy.

R&S®PWC200 with reference antenna
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R&S®PWC200 with reference antenna

Versatile quiet zone simulation

Easily configurable quiet zone diameter and test distance

The R&S®PWC200 can synthesize electromagnetic fields programmed when preparing the test setup. R&S®PWC-K10 field simulation software provides simulations that apply various parameters, such as the desired quiet zone diameter and test distance. This flexibility enables the R&S®PWC200 to measure base stations of different sizes with the same static test setup.

Field simulation results
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Field simulation results

Sample results for electric field distribution at 3.5 GHz in the quiet zone at a distance of 1.5 m from the antenna array

Automated field calibration

Fast and automated self-calibration in the field with R&S®PWC software

R&S®PWC-K50 field and path loss calibration software works with the R&S®TC-TA18 calibration antenna to automatically calibrate and verify the R&S®PWC200 in the field. This process does not require the opposite antennas to be moved. The periodic maintenance and verification of high measurement accuracy is simple and quick.

R&S®PWC200 with calibration antenna installed
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R&S®PWC200 with calibration antenna installed

Calibration and verification system setup with the R&S®PWC200 on the left and a calibration antenna on the right.

Electronic near-field scanning

Automated power factor calibration and power density measurement

R&S®PWC-K80 power density measurement software measures the planar distribution of power density radiating from a 5G massive MIMO base station. This feature is especially useful in production testing without positioning systems. The R&S®PWC200 can easily verify electronically steered beams with small tilt angles of +/- 10° for base stations and display peak areas.

Power factors spatial distribution graphics
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Power factors spatial distribution graphics

Examples of RMS (left) and peak (right) power densities. Spatial distribution for a TDD signal at 3.4 GHz.

R&S®PWC200 software tools

Comprehensive R&S®PWC 200 software tools allow easy configuration

The R&S®PWC200 can be controlled by either the R&S®AMS32 system software or customer-specific OTA software. Four software tools are available as standalone executable programs: field simulation (R&S®PWC-K10), field and path loss calibration (R&S®PWC-K50), self-test and hardware verification (R&S®PWC-K70) and power density measurements (R&S®PWC-K80). The user interface is clearly arranged and the configuration data sets are visible in CSV file format.

R&S®PWC200 system software architecture
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R&S®PWC200 system software architecture

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