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Agilent Technologies Introduces RF Switch Platform that Can Reduce Custom-Switch Development Time by Half

Mar 19, 2008

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today introduced an RF switch platform designed to simplify the task of defining and building a custom switch matrix. The Agilent L4490A/91A RF switch platform allows R&D and manufacturing engineers to cut their RF switch development time by up to 50 percent.

Engineers can use the platform to create custom switch matrices for design validation and functional test of aerospace and defense communications equipment, and for wireless equipment such as mobile radios, handsets and base stations. The L4490A/91A provides tools to easily define and build a custom switch matrix while reducing overall design time, costs and time to market -- all without sacrificing signal integrity.

"With this new switch platform's robust design, our customers can have confidence in the reliability and supportability of their switching systems," said Agilent's Gary Whitman, vice president and general manager, System Products Division. "Engineers in R&D and manufacturing are constantly under pressure to lower costs and get their products to market faster. This platform allows our customers to quickly define, build and integrate their switch matrix into their current test environments."

RF test equipment is often expensive and represents a significant cost in an automated test system. For better asset utilization, a custom RF switch matrix is used to route high-frequency signals between sources, the device under test, and the measurement equipment. Engineers can build custom designs by adding RF and microwave switches, attenuators and other signal conditional components to the Agilent RF switch platform to meet their specific requirements.

The RF switch platform is available in two options, which gives flexibility for custom requirements as well as expandability for future projects. The 2U and 4U versions come with ample space to mount switches and other components. Both platforms come standard with 64 coil drives integrated into the enclosure, with several options offered for expansion. Features include:

  • Flexible and easily configurable switch mounting system for robust and reliable signal routing;

  • 3D models for quick layout and documentation of RF/uw switches and cables;

  • Graphical Web interface for quick setup, troubleshooting and support;

  • Easy connection and control of all the most popular microwave switches and attenuators;

  • Effective switch management with user-defined switch sequences, relay counter and switch closure verification and;

  • Software drivers for all the most common programming environments.

The Agilent LXI Switch Family

The L4490A/91A is a new addition to Agilent's 34980A and L4400 switch family that is fully compliant with the LXI class C specification. With built-in 10/100 Base-T Ethernet (LAN) and GPIB interfaces, engineers can quickly and easily connect to a PC or network. All of Agilent's new switch products can be remotely monitored or operated from any browser by connecting to the built-in Web pages. Information on Agilent RF and microwave switches and attenuators to 50GHz can be found at

More information about the Agilent L4490A/91A RF Switch Platform is available at or A video demonstration is available at

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Agilent L4490A 2U high RF/uW RF Switch Platform with 64 relay drive lines is priced at $4,150. The L4491A 4U high RF/uW RF Switch Platform with 64 relay drive lines is priced at $4,750. These products are available now.

About Agilent Technologies

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) is the world's premier measurement company and a technology leader in communications, electronics, life sciences and chemical analysis. The company's 19,000 employees serve customers in more than 110 countries. Agilent had net revenues of $5.4 billion in fiscal 2007. Information about Agilent is available on the Web at

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