6X boost for in PXI channel density for semiconductor test system 

February 07, 2018 // By Nick Flaherty
National Instruments (NI) has launched a high-density source measure unit (SMU) that provides six times more DC channel density than previous devices for testing RF, MEMS, and mixed-signal and other analogue semiconductor components.

Chipmakers have rapidly adopted the PXI-based Semiconductor Test System (STS) for its throughput, performance at cost and footprint on the production floor. The PXIe-4163 SMU further complements these capabilities. It delivers increased DC channel density for higher parallelism in multisite applications and lab-grade measurement quality in a production-ready form factor. Engineers can use the same instrumentation in the validation lab and the production floor, which reduces challenges with measurement correlation and shortens time to market.

“Highly disruptive technologies like 5G, the Internet of Things and autonomous vehicles place continued pressure on semiconductor organizations to evolve and adopt more efficient approaches to semiconductor test – from the lab environment to the production floor,” said Eric Starkloff, NI executive vice president of global sales and marketing. “Semiconductor test is a strategic focus for NI. We are extending the capabilities of our software platform and PXI, exemplified by our newest PXI SMU, to help chipmakers address their top challenges.”

Engineers can use the new PXIe-4163 SMU in either STS configurations or stand-alone PXI systems. It includes up to 24 channels in a single PXI Express slot with +/- 24 V per channel and up to 100 mA source/sink per channel. This provides up to 408 high-precision SMU channels in a single PXI chassis (4U of rack space) with full support in the STS including system-level cabling, calibration and pin-mapping support

There is also 100 pA current sensitivity with a 100 kS/s sampling rate and update rate and interactive configuration and debug software. 

To learn more about STS capabilities, visit  www.ni.com/sts/.

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