PXI instrumentation for aerospace and defence testing

PXI test instruments for military and aviation programmes

Collaboration between NI and Astronics results in further PXI instruments to support test programmes in the aerospace and defence industries.

National Instruments (NI) and Astronics Test Systems (ATS) have announced the Astronics PXIe-6943 Digital Test Instrument, Astronics PXIe-3352 Rubidium Clock Source and Astronics PXIe-1209 Pulse Pattern Generator. The three new test instruments accompany the previously released Astronics PXIe-2461 Frequency Time Interval Counter and are the latest products from NI and Astronics’ collaboration to provide PXI-based instruments with test program set-(TPS-) compatible software for existing VXI instruments.

“The challenge of lowering cost and preserving legacy investment in the face of rapid technology change requires industry collaborations for success and attention to software compatibility,” said Luke Schreier, director of automated test product marketing at NI. “The NI investment in LabVIEW and PXI produces cutting-edge capability, such as the recently released second-generation vector signal transceiver (VST), which is enhanced by Astronics’ expertise in TPS integration to migrate key legacy technologies to the PXI platform. The NI and Astronics’ collaboration builds on the strengths of both companies, but more importantly, it preserves technology investment for our mutual customers and fosters innovation.”

The flagship product of the collaboration is the -2 to 7 V, 200 MB/s Astronics PXIe-6943 Digital Test Instrument. The Astronics PXIe-6943 is modelled on the highly successful VXI-based Astronics T940 Digital Resource Modules, which enable pattern-based digital test in many commercial and government programmes. These instruments are also TPS-compatible with legacy instruments from Astronics as well as other instrument vendors.

“Digital subsystems continue to play a crucial role in most aerospace and defence test platforms,” said Brian Price, executive vice president and general manager at ATS. “With the introduction of these new Astronics PXI Express products, engineers can now expand on today’s test platforms to support tomorrow’s military/aerospace requirements and maintain their original TPS investments. Our new digital subsystem includes the latest parallel digital, serial and bus protocols while taking advantage of the high speed, small size and lower cost of the PXI platform. These PXI instruments round out our already successful line of VXI instruments so that we can continue supporting the aerospace and defence automated test systems of yesterday, today and tomorrow.”

Also newly introduced, the Astronics PXIe-3352 Rubidium Clock Source combines a rubidium oscillator with a GPS receiver into a single, high-precision instrument. The new Astronics PXIe-1209 Pulse Pattern Generator is a high-performance, 2-channel, 100 MHz pulse generator that delivers dual independent pulse generation with extremely high resolution.

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