Tektronix releases PCI Express 4.0 Test Solution including support for 16 GT/s data rates

Created July 12, 2016
Technologies and Products

Tektronix has announced a series of enhancements to its suite of PCI Express (PCIe) test solutions including support for the 16 GT/s data rate and the industry’s first automated transmitter and receiver test solutions supporting the PCIe 4.0 architecture.

With the faster data rates for PCIe 4.0 technology come new test challenges such as major increases in channel loss, tightening of the total jitter budget and more complex link training and timing requirements. As design margins shrink, accurate and standard-specific measurement solutions play a vital role in debug, design verification and interoperability testing.

Tektronix says that all of these needs are fully met by the latest Tektronix test solutions for PCIe 4.0 and 3.0 in conjunction with DPO70000SX high performance oscilloscopes.

“As important industry specifications such as PCIe evolve over time, it’s critical that our test and measurement tools keep pace,” said Brian Reich, general manager, Performance Oscilloscopes, Tektronix. “Offering unmatched accuracy and scalability, DPO70000SX oscilloscopes along with the enhancements to our PCIe solutions enable our customers to debug and verify compliance to the latest versions of the PCIe specification while dramatically reducing compliance test times and boosting productivity.”

The option PCE4 for Tektronix DPO/DPS70000SX and DPO/MSO70000DX oscilloscopes provides new transmitter measurements specific to the new PCIe 4.0 Base Specification including the 100 MHz reference clock, with its picosecond jitter requirements, used in all four generations of PCI Express: 2.5, 5.0, 8.0 and 16.0 GT/s.

Other enhancements include support for the new U.2 form factor (formerly SFF-8639) and additional optimisations to reduce the overall test time by about 30 percent. These same capabilities are also available as enhancements for Option PCE3, Tektronix’ solution for PCI Express 3.0 technology.

Tektronix now offers support for PCIe 4.0 and PCIe 3.1a Base Specification receiver testing. The solutions automate Tektronix BERTScope bit error rate testers and Tektronix high performance real-time oscilloscopes to calibrate stressed eye openings and test Rx conformance and jitter tolerance.

Following industry-standard methodology, these solutions, offered in cooperation with Tektronix partner Granite River Labs, provide a simple user interface to automate complex PCIe testing and significantly reduce equipment calibration time. The solutions also support looping through a variety of timing and voltage parameters, using ranges defined by the user, to create 2-dimensional result plots.

The PCI Express Base Specification, Revision 4.0, Version 0.7, is quite complex, exceeding 1,000 pages, making it challenging for test engineers to quickly come up to speed. Tektronix works closely with industry organizations such as PCI-SIG to help translate industry specification test requirements into easy-to-use turnkey test solutions that offer clear and concise characterization reports.

As engineering teams prepare for next generation serial standards in the rapidly growing cloud computing and storage segments, they need a measurement platform with extremely consistent and precise measurement for the high data rate signalling schemes used in PCIe 4.0 and other standards.

Link: http://news.tektronix.com/2016-06-28-Tektronix-Releases-PCI-Express-4-0-Test-Solution-Including-Support-for-16-GT-s-Data-Rates

By Optical Connections News Team

Matthew Peach

This article was written
by Matthew Peach

Matthew Peach is a freelance technology journalist specialising in photonics and communications. He has previously worked for several business-to-business publishers, editing a range of high-tech magazines and websites.