Aeroflex Adds Boundary Scan, Q-Test, PXI Wrapper to ATE System

Aeroflex has improved the functionality of its 5800 Series multi-configuration, multi-function ATE system with the addition of a Boundary Scan and Q-Test capability along with a PXI software wrapper tool. The Aeroflex 5800 Series is a highly flexible, scalable and modular test environment designed to provide the true re-configurability needed to meet the ever-changing requirements of the rapidly evolving PCB industry.

Aeroflex 5800 multi-configuration, multi-function ATE system

Boundary scan provides the basis for observing and controlling the boundary pins of a JTAG compatible device via software enabling in-circuit testing to be undertaken without the need for bed-of-nails equipment. Boundary scan tackles the issue of rising test development costs particularly associated with high density, complex surface mount devices coupled with the reduction in nodal access. Boundary scan allows devices to be accessed via four dedicated pins known as the Test Access Port (TAP). The TAP can be used either for testing single devices or, by daisy chaining, groups of devices connected together. A typical boundary scan test strategy usually comprises six elements: boundary scan path check, device identification checks (IDCODE), interconnect tests, device internal tests (INTEST), device built-in-self test (BIST) and external tests (EXTEST).

Q-Test test enables both analog and digital devices plus connectors to be tested for pin connectivity without detailed information on the device under test. In practice, only pin list data is required to generate, debug and test, even for high pin-out devices. The Q-Test features comprise simplified vector testing, inductive or capacitive signal pickup for broad applications, graphical user set-up and flexible mounting for detection circuitry.

The PXI software wrapper tool allows PXI cards to be quickly and easily integrated into the Aeroflex software environment without .NET assemblies. However, the new tool is not just restricted to PXI cards and can also be used for most instrument drivers including DLLs.

The 5800 Series is a highly flexible and scaleable combinational PCB testing platform. It features an open hardware and software architecture and reconfigurable pinface styles to give users the ability to combine low-cost analog in-circuit testing with a maximum of 3456 test points, high-integrity functional testing and systems test all within a single test environment. All this saves floor space, reduces board-handling damage and lowers the cost of test.

With the core hardware architecture based on a PXI backplane and Aeroflex’s own internal bus providing high-speed signal integrity, users have the opportunity to create versatile test scenarios based on the combined use of 5800 Series instrument cards, Aeroflex PXI instruments, third party PXI cards and external instrumentation. This enables existing test applications to be simply and easily migrated to the 5800 Series platform as required.

From a software perspective, the 5800 Series includes a completely new integrated test environment featuring Assisted Program Generation software. The software environment is completely .NET compatible ensuring that test programs already written in any .NET language can be easily implemented on the 5800 Series and avoids the need to retrain test engineers as they can utilise their existing programming skills.

Different test environments have different signal integrity requirements when connected to the unit under test. To address these differing requirements, the 5800 Series can be supplied with almost any interface from Virginia Panel to a cabled system. The 5800 Series can also be used to undertake parallel testing of either two different boards or two boards of the same type to reduce board handling time.

The 5800 Series is available in three different body styles – floor standing (5850), benchtop (5820) and rack-mount (5830). Each body style has a common core of 21-slot rack, power and utility cards. The floor standing system is ergonomically angled horizontally and has a bed-of-nails style interface to the fixture. A mechanical locking mechanism pulls the fixture down on to the interface. An independent dual-well vacuum control connects the test subject to the fixture. The floor standing system has three programmable user supplies each capable of providing up to 30V at 3A or 15V at 5A. The benchtop system provides the same core system in a lower cost package with the Aeroflex instruments cards interfaced to the test fixture by means of interconnecting cabling. The rack-mount version builds the core system in a standard 19-inch rack for further test flexibility. The Aeroflex instrument cards can be cabled to an industry standard interface of the customer’s choice and further integrated with additional test resources not available in PXI format.

About Aeroflex
Aeroflex Incorporated is a global provider of high technology solutions to the aerospace, defence, cellular and broadband communications markets. The Company’s diverse technologies allow it to design, develop, manufacture and market a broad range of test, measurement and microelectronic products. The Company’s common stock trades on the Nasdaq National Market System under the symbol ARXX and is included in the S&P SmallCap 600 index.

About Aeroflex Test Solutions, Instruments Division
Staffed with experts in RF and microwave signal generation and processing subsystems, Aeroflex Test Solutions Group provides test and measurement systems, instruments, modules, services and integration support for the communications test, military, government and semiconductor industries. Aeroflex’ solutions reflect a commitment to industry-accepted standards and the concept of modular product development. They encompass Communications test (public mobile radio, wireless cellular and telecom, military radio and avionics radio test), Signal sources (synthesizers, signal generators, signal analyzers and phase noise systems), General-purpose test (spectrum analyzers, microwave analyzers, bit error rate testers) and Systems (satellite, ATE, PXI and radar).