Automated USB Type-C tests enable faster data transfers

Three automated tests by Tektronix meet consumer demand for ever faster data downloads, from live streaming videos to global videoconferences.

The transmitter automated tests are designed to meet the requirements of next-generation technologies for large, rapid data transfers and low-latency video displays. Tektronix USB4, Thunderbolt 4 and DisplayPort 2.0 automated compliance and debugging solutions address challenges such as test time, signal integrity and device under test (DUT) control. They also boast physical layer electrical testing and characterisation, to enable designers to comply with the next-generation standards over the USB-C connector.

“These solutions easily integrate into custom test environments and will enable our customers to test and debug USB4 designs that go into any device with a USB4 or TBT4 port –– from laptops to tablets and cell phones to televisions,” said Matt Ochs, general manager at Tektronix. In addition to faster charging times and data transfers, the design allows up to six devices to be connected in parallel.

The new USB4 standard increases data transfer rates up to eight times faster than the USB 3.0 standard and delivers fast and secure 100W USB-C charging. DisplayPort 2.0 is set to triple data bandwidth performance compared to the DisplayPort 1.4 and includes 16K video resolution, higher refresh rates, and improved user experience with augmented reality / virtual reality (AR / VR) displays.

Graphics card maker MSI uses the Tektronix TekExpress USB4 automation software, which offers USB4 DUT automation, to reach its required compliance patterns.

Electronic design automation company, Synopsys, uses the USB-C IO tests for DisplayPort 2.0. “When using the TekExpress DisplayPort 2.0 Tool, we were not only able to understand how to meet compliance, but we were also able to debug and understand the limits of our physical layer, said Andre Merlo, senior test engineer at Synopsys, adding that the tool is user-friendly.

The Tektronix USB4 test complies with the USB4 Specification Ver1.0 and USB4 Router Assembly Electrical Compliance Test Specification Rev 1.0. It completes both Lane 0 and Lane 1 transmitter tests without flipping the USB Type-C connector or USB4 high-speed fixture.

The Tektronix TBT3 and TBT4 tests support 10G, 10.3G, 20G and 20.6G data rates and provide automatic DUT control support for both TenLira/TDT (Intel’s scripts) and USB4 ETT.

Tektronix DisplayPort 2.0 test offers a pre-compliance solution with the company’s proposed measurement for the ultra high bit rate (UHBR) speeds. It also supports the P76xx tri-mode probe with multiple probe tip options. The TekExpress Signal Validation feature validates compliance pattern. There is also the TekExpress Pre-Recorded mode to support offline analysis and baseline for future specification changes.

The Tektronix USB4, TBT4, and DP2.0 automated tests are available now for use with DPO / MSO70000SX / DX oscilloscopes with 23GHz bandwidth and above, and 100Gsamples per second sample rate. The scope set up can additionally be used for USB2.0 / USB3.2 / DP1.2 / DP1.4 testing, providing a single test station for the USB, TBT and DP.

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