Oscilloscope based on SiGe chipset achieves an industry-first 60 GHz real-time bandwidth

Oscilloscope based on SiGe chipset achieves an industry-first 60 GHz real-time bandwidth

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By eeNews Europe

Four oscilloscope channels, all at silicon-based 36 GHz bandwidth (the highest available) and 80 GS/s sample rate in a single acquisition module, provide twice the bandwidth density of competitive oscilloscopes.

LeCroy’s patented Digital Bandwidth Interleave (DBI) technology allows extension of the silicon-based 36 GHz bandwidth and 80 GS/s sample rate to 60 GHz and 160 GS/s by combining two 36 GHz channels. The 60 GHz real-time bandwidth is an industry first, and is nearly twice the bandwidth rating of competitive 32 and 33 GHz oscilloscopes with an equivalent number of channels.

Furthermore, LeCroy’s proprietary ChannelSync technology in the LabMaster 10 Zi oscilloscopes permits precise synchronization of up to twenty silicon-based 36-GHz / 80-GS/s channels and up to ten 60-GHz / 160-GS/s DBI channels–capability not offered by any other manufacturer, and an additional industry first.

In addition to the industry leading bandwidth (60 GHz), sampling rate (160 GS/s), analysis memory (1024 Mpts/ch), high bandwidth channel density (four channels at 36 GHz in a single acquisition module), and channel count (up to ten channels at 60 GHz, up to twenty channels at 36 GHz), LabMaster 10 Zi also boasts a number of other industry firsts. Trigger bandwidth is 30 GHz — twice that of LeCroy’s WaveMaster 8 Zi-A and LabMaster 9 Zi-A oscilloscopes, and far more than is provided by competitive oscilloscopes. Jitter Noise Floor is a very low 100 fs(rms) for the 50 and 60 GHz models. Rise time (20-80%) is 5.5 ps for the 60 GHz model, and 9.75 ps for the 36 GHz model. Additionally, a 14.1 Gb/s 80-bit serial pattern trigger with support for 8b/10b and 64b/66b symbol triggering and PCI Express Generation 3.0 will be optionally available for LabMaster 10 Zi models. This trigger significantly enhances the value of LabMaster 10 Zi for high speed serial data debugging by providing ability to isolate errors to specific symbols and PCI Express link layer.

Key technology enablers

LeCroy’s silicon bandwidth advantage is due to years of accumulated experience with SiGe processes, most recently by obtaining 20 GHz of silicon bandwidth using 7HP SiGe. The latest industry-leading LeCroy 36 GHz chipset is based on 8HP SiGe. SiGe is a widely adopted, mainstream, commercial process backed by chip technology leader IBM Semiconductor, with years of collective implementation knowledge and experience. IBM’s 8HP SiGe process is the fourth-generation SiGe process with two times the performance of the previous generation and up to 200 GHz transistor switching speeds. 8HP SiGe provides lower electrical noise for increased performance, which translates into a 3 to 4 dB baseline noise improvement compared to previously deployed 7HP SiGe. This equates to noise performance at 36 GHz, roughly equivalent to what is available in LeCroy or competitive 20 GHz oscilloscopes today. 8HP SiGe also provides lower power consumption, making possible a single acquisition module with twice the high bandwidth channel density available from other manufacturers.

DBI, a proprietary, patented LeCroy technology, provides the ability to double or triple the bandwidth available in raw silicon by splitting a high bandwidth signal into multiple paths of lower bandwidth, acquiring these lower bandwidth signals with best-in-class silicon chip technologies, and then re-assembling the separate lower bandwidth paths into a single high bandwidth path using digital signal processing (DSP). Sample rate and acquisition memory are likewise doubled or tripled along with the bandwidth. DBI is the only method that allows real-time oscilloscope bandwidth to go beyond the limits of what is possible with chip bandwidth alone, and is an absolute necessity for those customers who are testing leading-edge technologies. The 60 GHz LabMaster 10 Zi acquisition module utilizes 7th generation LeCroy DBI to nearly double the bandwidth of the four channel 36 GHz silicon-based acquisition module and provide two additional channels at 60 GHz, 160 GS/s, and up to 1024 Mpts/ch of analysis memory.

The LabMaster modular oscilloscope architecture separates the oscilloscope signal acquisition function from the display, control, and processing functions. The LabMaster Master Control Module (MCM-Zi) contains the display, controls, ChannelSync architecture, and a powerful server-class CPU. LabMaster 10 Zi Acquisition Modules, based on 8HP SiGe and DBI, provide silicon-based 36 GHz performance with up to 60 GHz on two channels. One LabMaster 10 Zi Master Control Module and one LabMaster 10 Zi Acquisition Module function as a single, conventional four channel 36 GHz oscilloscope, or as a conventional two channel 60 GHz and four channel 36 GHz oscilloscope. However, by using ChannelSync technology, up to five LabMaster 10 Zi Acquisition Modules can be perfectly synchronized, thus extending the already unique channel density performance by a factor of five to achieve up to 20 channels at 36 GHz and 10 channels at 60 GHz.

Additional models

To meet a variety of industry needs, LeCroy is also announcing models with silicon-based 25 and 30 GHz of bandwidth, each with 80 GS/s sampling rate on each channel. A model with 50 GHz of bandwidth and 160 GS/s of sample rate on two channels is also available. This model also has silicon-based 36 GHz performance. All new acquisition module models are used with the LabMaster 10 Zi Master Control Module for easy expandability in channel count, and all models may be upgraded in bandwidth at a later date to up to 60 GHz. Customers who have made previous investments in LabMaster 9 Zi-A may mix and match those acquisition modules with the newly announced LabMaster 10 Zi models, preserving the customer’s previous investment in LeCroy oscilloscopes.

Standard memory is 20 Mpts/ch (on all four channels, doubled when channels are bandwidth interleaved) with memory options of 32, 64, 128, 256 and 512 Mpts/ch. Maximum analysis memory of 512 Mpts/ch (36 GHz) and 1024 Mpts/ch (60 GHz) is also an industry first, combining long acquisition captures with the company’s strong heritage of long memory analysis capability and advanced eye diagram/jitter analysis with the world’s fastest and highest bandwidth density oscilloscopes.

The same software and hardware options, accessories, and probes available with previous generations of LabMaster are also available with the LabMaster 10 Zi.

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