Agilent Technologies unveils high-sensitivity multiport optical power meters

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) has added another product to its portfolio of optical power meters. The two-channel N7747A and four-channel N7748A bring the higher sensitivity of the 81634B sensor module to the compact multichannel N77 platform, with updated memory size and data transfer speed, the company says.

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) has added another product to its portfolio of optical power meters. The two-channel N7747A and four-channel N7748A bring the higher sensitivity of the 81634B sensor module to the compact multichannel N77 platform, with updated memory size and data transfer speed, the company says.

The Agilent N7747A and N7748A optical power meters enable engineers to make parallel multiport measurements and monitor weak signals and small signal changes with high precision in, for example, communications or sensing applications. The meters can detect power levels down to -110 dBm and log data at intervals down to 25 µs with up to 1 million points per channel. An equally large data buffer supports simultaneous measurement and data transfer.

With these features and specifications, the meters make it easy for engineers to monitor signal stability and transient events for long periods, Agilent says. Up to eight power-meter channels fit in a 19-inch rack-height unit. Each channel also has a front-panel BNC connector that delivers analog output voltage proportional to the measured signal.

Like the faster N7744A and N7745A, these new power meters can be used with N77xx viewer software for simple control and reading and are programmable with the same set of SPCI commands as the rest of Agilent’s optical power meter portfolio. The latest version of the 816x VXI plug and play driver also adds support for these products. Computer interfaces are provided for USB 2.0, LAN and GPIB.

Agilent says that, in addition to high sensitivity, low noise, and solid stability, the N7747A and N7748A also provide high relative accuracy like the company’s 81634B modules, with extremely low polarization dependence and spectral ripple as well as specified linearity. The combination of these factors makes the power meters an excellent choice in setups for measuring insertion loss and lowest PDL in passive optical components, the company adds.

Agilent will introduce the N7748A and the N7747A at OFC/NFOEC this week.

The Agilent N7747A and N7748A high sensitivity multiport optical power meters will be available to order in May; shipments will begin in May as well. Price for a typical configuration starts at $20,750.

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