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RF Attenuators Use Reed Relays For Attenuating RF Signals

Introduction

Test equipment capable of use in RF evaluations will generally require attenuation circuits to help them evaluate various aspects of RF components and RF circuitry. These attenuators need a switching device to switch the various dB levels that adjust the RF signals. Since attenuators are typically used to calibrate RF signal strength, the switching devices must be very good at handling RF so they don’t end up attenuating the signal strength themselves.  Also, the switching devices can be used on a regular basis which add up to a switching life concern. Electromechanical relays have been used in this application but the mechanical life is typically limited to less than one million operations. They can also be very expensive. New high frequency reed relays from Standex Electronics have become the design-in choice with their greatly improved RF characteristics and long life.

Full Application Write Up
RF Attenuators - Reed Relay

Features

  • High reliability
  • Ideal RF characteristics
  • Ideal for carrying fast digital pulses with skew rates less than 160 picoseconds
  • Ability to carry RF signals from DC up to 7 GHz
  • 50Ω characteristic impedance
  • Switch to shield capacitance 0.7 picofarads typical
  • Dielectric strength across the contacts 200 volts
  • Contacts dynamically tested
  • Surface mounted
  • Very low profile
  • BGA’s available
  • Rugged thermoset over-molded packaging
  • Quad-shield arrangement
SeriesDimensionsmminchesIllustration
CRFW4.40.173 CRF Reed Relay
H3.50.137
L8.60.338

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