Reverberation Chamber Supports OTA Measurements

| Information and Communication Technology

Wireless connectivity testing possible within reverberation chambers

Test instrument and reverberation chamber combination supports OTA measurements for RF performance verification

Anritsu and Bluetest have brought their technology expertise together in an agreement to combine their recent product upgrades to create an Over-the-Air (OTA) measurement system for verifying RF performance in tri-frequency bands of the latest WLAN standard (IEEE 802.11be). OTA is a measurement method for accurately evaluating wireless device reliability, efficiency and performance by sending/receiving wirelessly. This is especially useful for comprehensively evaluating the wireless communications performance of equipment including antennas.

This collaboration provides their future clients with a WLAN test system that is capable of performing transmit power (TRP) and receive sensitivity (TIS) measurements on IEEE 802.11be supported devices. Measuring the OTA performance in life-like but repeatable conditions enables manufacturers of high-speed data transmission devices, including high-end smartphones, AR/VR devices and cloud gaming consoles, to optimise the radio performance and end-user satisfaction.

Change in standard

IEEE 802.11be is being standardised as the successor to IEEE 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6/6E) and is targeted to realise high-speed communications that significantly exceed IEEE 802.11ax. The standard is expected to be a fundamental technology supporting the latest applications and services, such as ultra-high resolution video streaming beyond 4K and AR/VR.

Although the official release of the standard is scheduled for 2024, product development based on the draft standard is underway, and most of the companies involved in this field have already begun to bring their products to market. IEEE 802.11be adopts innovative technologies such as 320 MHz bandwidth, 4096 QAM modulation and Multiple RU, and therefore a comprehensive evaluation of RF performance is required.

Reverberation Chamber

The Anritsu MT8862A Wireless Connectivity Test Set is dedicated to the WLAN standard, hence it is optimised for stable and reliable connections with wider dynamic range, even in a faded environment such as in the Bluetest reverberation chamber. It is now updated with a new radio module adding support for 320 MHz bandwidth, in addition to the supported 2.4, 5 and 6 GHz bands. The test setup is easily expanded to support 2×2 MIMO measurements using two MT8862A units.

According to Bluetest Product Manager, Klas Arvidsson, the combination of the Bluetest reverberation chamber test system and Anritsu’s MT8862A provides a compact and fast system for evaluating WLAN device performance.

“Various sizes of chambers, from the very compact, “fits-through-an-office-door”, RTS25 up to the walk-in RTS95 chamber, caters for measurements on small, as well as very large WLAN devices such as television screens or other home appliances. It is even possible to measure wearables while used by a real person,” he says.

Keita Masuhara, Product Manager of the IoT Test Solutions Division at Anritsu Corporation, believes that the IEEE 802.11be standard is not only an extension of the physical layer technology, but also adopts innovative technologies such as Multi-link Operation, which enables easier comfortable high-speed communication than ever before by efficiently using three frequency bands simultaneously. Multi-Link Operation is a technology that enables one device to simultaneously send and receive data across different frequency bands and channels.

“However, specific performance evaluation is necessary to prevent problems and realise its full potential. Anritsu has worked with Bluetest to provide a valuable method for OTA RF performance evaluation. We are confident that the new measurement system will contribute to efficient performance testing,” he says.

The Anritsu MT8862A and all Bluetest chambers are available for order, and upgrade packages are offered for already installed systems.

Jonathan Newell
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