Anritsu adds IEEE 802.11ax support for comprehensive WLAN testing

A new option for Anritsu’s MT8862A (WLAN tester) measures the RF TRx characteristics of WLAN IEEE802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax devices. According to Anritsu, the addition makes the MT8862A the industry’s first WLAN tester that can evaluate signal quality in all data rates of major WLAN standards currently used.

The option allows for RF evaluation of IEEE 802.11ax-equipped devices in both direct mode and network mode. Direct mode offers a quick evaluation but the option provides for the evaluation to be performed under the realistic operation conditions using the communication protocol in the network mode.

IEEE 802.11ax also uses two transmission modes, single user and multi user modes. Single user is the same transmission method (OFDM) as the conventional standard and is the base mode of IEEE 802.11ax. The signal quality of WLAN has different characteristics for each data rate, making signal evaluation at each data rate very important, says Anritsu. The MT8862A is the only instrument that can be controlled at all data rates of major WLAN standards, including 11ax single user data rates.

WLAN is increasingly incorporated into devices, such as mobile terminals, home appliances (printers and TVs), in-vehicle devices, industrial devices and sensor-enabled devices on the IoT. This has resulted in heavy traffic, saturating the available WLAN spectrum in high-density environments and reduced connectivity.

Adopting the IEEE 802.11ax standard, expected to be completed in November 2020, improves communications efficiency by enabling simultaneous connection of multiple WLAN products to an access point (AP) as well as improved spatial usage efficiency, and is expected to resolve inadequate spatial resource problems. The IEEE 802.11ax standard has already been adopted by the smartphone and PC markets and is expected to become the main standard within several years, advises Anritsu. In these circumstances, demand for TRx evaluations of IEEE 802.11 WLAN products to assure performance is expected to increase.

The wireless connectivity test set MT8862A is a WLAN tester has built-in network and direct test modes and supports a diverse set of measurements of WLAN products, including RF TRx characteristics (Tx power, modulation accuracy, Rx sensitivity).

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