Agilent debuts benchtop SMU line to compete with expensive semiconductor analyzers

May 24, 2011 – BUSINESS WIRE — Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE:A) released the B2900A Series line of compact benchtop source/measure units (SMU) for semiconductor, component, and materials testing. The company claims that these SMUs offer capabilities competitive with semiconductor device analyzers.

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These SMUs provide wide voltage/current ranges with a graphical user interface (GUI) on color displays. For an entry-level cost, the SMUs provide current-versus-voltage (I-V curve) characterization on semiconductors, active and passive packages and materials. Users can perform interactive testing, debugging and characterization faster than on conventional SMUs, according to the company. Under programmatic control, the new SMUs support the SCPI command set, enabling migration from conventional SMUs, and basic compatibility.

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Figure. The Agilent B2900A 4.3" color LCD display supports graphical and numerical view modes, and enables test set-up and check test results quickly. Single view, dual view, graph view and roll view improve usability and productivity of bench-top test, debug and characterization.

Agilent expects research and development (R&D), manufacturing and education customers for the line.

The B2900A Series comprises four models: the B2901A and B2911A (one-channel) and the B2902A and B2912A (two-channel). The line features:

  • ±210V voltage range
  • ±3A DC and ±10.5A pulsed current ranges
  • 100nV and 10fA minimum resolution
  • 12,500 readings per second (maximum sweep-operation reading rate, source/measure to GPIB) archived.

An SMU integrates voltage/current sources, voltage/current meters, switches and arbitrary waveform generator capabilities for easier, simpler characterization and device analysis. Many Agilent SMUs, including the B2900A Series, can operate as a four-quadrant voltage/current source, an electrical load, a voltage/current meter, a pulse generator and an arbitrary waveform generator without changing connectors or tools. The new line complements Agilent’s B1500 semiconductor device analyzer, the N6700 modular power system and the N6705 DC power analyzer.

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) provides measurement technologies to chemical analysis, life sciences, electronics and communications industries. More information about the B2900A Series is available online at

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