Product Bulletin – Integrate RF Surge and Lightning Protection Without Paying a Size or Weight Penalty!

The Neverending Quest For Size Reduction

As with most technologies, RF and Wireless system design is an ever-changing and shifting world.  As certain technologies or RF bands become popular, others fade away.

However, the one ever-present force on the industry is the steady, but relentless, push towards smaller size and better integration over time.

Lightning/Surge Protection at the PCB Level?

Here at NexTek we understand the desire to bring things into the box, or even all the way onto the Radio PCB… However, we also know that Lightning Transients contain too much energy to deal with safely at the PCB Level… Trace widths, ground place areas, and the components themselves all become limiting factors that will prevent complete and effective protection.

Given this reality, the last place where it is reasonable and safe to protect against Lightning or other Surge events is at the radio’s box or chassis level.  By replacing the normal I/O connector with a protected version, designer can ensure that they have high-performance protection without paying any significant size or weight penalty.  As long as the radio’s chassis is grounded well, the bulk of the Transient Energy will be drained safely to ground before entering the box and/or the PCB itself.

It may still be advisable to install some simple protection on the PCB, but only for final clean-up…Something like a small Protection Diode coupled with a DC Blocking Capacitor (if possible for your application) would provide plenty of protection against any residual energy that gets past the Protected I/O Connector.

Maximum Protection in the Minimum Amount of Space

Below, you can see an array of our Ultra-Compact protection options…  They all include high-performance lightning protection, and are available in a wide variety of connector configurations on both the Input and Output side.compact-arrestors

Outside Connector Options – Type N, TNC, SMA

Inside Connector Options – SMA, MMCX, RG188, RG316, and more!

Threat Types – Lightning, Static (ESD), and EMP


Learn More

Ultra Compact Protection – Home Page

Ultra Compact Protection Product Bulletin – Post



Three Critical Factors for Comparing and Selecting an EMI Filter

There are three major criterion to pay attention to when comparing different EMI filters and trying to select the proper solution for a given application.


C-Type Filter Comparison

  • Filtering Performance

    • As filtering performance is the reason for any filter to exist in the first place, this is a crucial selection factor.
      • All filters are not created equal, both in terms of Maximum Insertion Loss and their performance up to High Frequencies (MHz to GHz+ range.)
      • Look for filters which maintain a high level of Insertion Loss through and beyond your major Frequency of Concern.

Learn More


 

US_Army_M-ATV_and_MRAP_MaxxPro_Dash_in_Afghanistan

  • Ruggedness and Ratings

    • For many applications where there are extreme environmental requirements such as Extreme Temperature Ranges, Shock & Vibration, and others are present…A filter’s ratings and performance across every type of application are an important way to vet any component for use in harsh environments
      • Some filters have extremely limited Temperature Range Ratings, especially in terms of Maximum Temperature
      • Some filters have a limited ability to withstand Shock and Vibration, and therefore would not be suitable for any type of mobile application.

Learn More


 

300 Ampere Rated Feedthru Filter - HPR300

  • Size and Form Factor

    • For most applications Size and Weight are important design considerations, and for many applications they are absolutely critical.
      • Compare filters with equivalent Filtering Performance and Current Ratings to determine the most compact option available!
      • Compare wire lug or busbar attachment styles to determine the ideal solution for your application.

Learn More


 

Learn More:

High Current Filters – Product Home

High Current Filters – Extreme Series (Burned-In)

Education Center



Why is Choosing a High Quality Lightning Arrestor Important? – 4 Important Reasons!

Here at NexTek, we take pride in offering a range of coaxial arrestors that are assembled here in the USA to our own designs, using the highest quality materials available and assembled under top notch quality control systems.  This is not always the case when it comes to most coaxial protection available on the market today…But Why Does That Matter?


Quality You Can Trust! – Assembled in the USA

Because we assemble every product here in the United States at the same location as our Design and Engineering staff, we can ensure that our quality standards are second-to-none.  Our assembly and quality technicians perform 100% RF testing on every arrestor built, to ensure that every unit we deliver to our customers is fully functional…significantly reducing downtime and returns!

NexTek Inc. - Assembled in USA


The Best Surge Performance – Period!

You don’t want just “average” protection…You want to know that your solution has been designed by utilizing decades of experience and expertise, and whose performance is regularly verified under full-scale Lightning testing!  The almost obsessive attention to detail of NexTek’s Design and Engineering Staff results in every facet of a given arrestor design being optimized for maximum performance…from the fundamental protection technology used, to minimizing overall size, to optimizing details like the number of center pin “fingers.”

Full Scale Lightning Testing


Ultra Long Lifetime – Even Outdoors!

NexTek arrestors have been known to last for years, and decades, in the field because of the high quality Nickel-Plated Brass we use as the main body material for the majority of our arrestor designs.  Compare this to the aluminum commonly used in solutions from some of our competitors, which we avoid whenever possible due to its inferior environmental performance!  Nickel over Brass has been used for high quality connectors for years, and remains the first choice for use in extreme environments!

Antarctica


High Mating Cycle Tolerance – Over and Over Again!

Our designs use high-quality Gold-plated Beryllium Copper center pins for maximum Surge Handling and long lifetime reasons…They can take the most current of any commonly used material, and they retain high springiness for maximum contact life over a long lifetime of use.  A high quality center pin design built from BeCu provides the best surge and mating cycle performance of any material!

Center Pin Damage


If you have a need for coaxial surge protection and performance, lifetime, assembly location, and receiving a quality product are important to you…  NexTek’s range of SurgeGuard surge arrestors for coaxial and RF applications can offer a high quality solution for any application!

Contact Us for assistance!


Learn More:

Coaxial Surge Arrestors (link)

Articles:

Coaxial Surge Protection of High Frequency Lines (.PDF)

Selecting Coaxial Surge Protectors (.PDF)



Why Selecting A Rugged EMI/RFI Filter Is Critical For Many Applications

High Current Feedthrough EMI/RFI noise filters are available with many different form factors and circuit designs…From simple C-type filters to L-C and multistage “Pi” filters (C-L-C), there is a wide range of solutions that exist on the market. However, most feedthrough filter designs use technology and construction techniques which make them susceptible to harsh environmental conditions like Shock, Vibration, and Extreme Temperatures.

P1 Hybrid

Why It Matters, A Practical Example: Electric or Hybrid Vehicle power systems is one particular example where high-current filters are required and must also prove to be rugged and reliable under extreme conditions…From the shock and vibration of thousands of miles of road use, to the extreme temperature ranges experienced in locations around the globe, any component used within an automotive design must be rugged and reliable. The same principles are just as important, if not more so, when applied to other high power systems found in applications such as those in the Aerospace, Industrial, and Medical fields.

Summary: There is a wide range of available filter designs, form factors, and circuit designs available on the market today, but there are many applications and programs where a Rugged design with extreme Shock, Vibration, and Temperature ratings is just as important to the selection process as the basic filter performance factors (such as a specified level (dB) of Insertion Loss and the thru-current rating.)

300 Ampere Rated Feedthru Filter - HPR300

How do NexTek solutions differ?:  NexTek’s HPR family of high current filters are C-type devices that utilize a unique and patented design and construction technique, which mechanically de-couples the Capacitive filtering elements from the main thru-current path of the filter. This design allows for safe and reliable performance in the most extreme environments for the most demanding of applications.

  • Mechanically De-Coupled Capacitor Filtering Elements – More rugged than most Ceramic Capacitor based designs
  • Extreme Temperature Range Ratings -55 to +95C – Less susceptible to overheating than Film Foil Capacitor based designs

More about the HPR Series of Feedthrough Filters: NexTek HPR Series of EMI/RFI feedthrough filters incorporate some advanced design techniques that are unique within the industry, allowing rugged designs that can handle whatever you throw at them! When this extreme performance is combined with other design factors such as their compact form factors, high frequency filtering performance, and the wide range of available Cap Values and Voltage Ratings…NexTek’s HPR series of DC Feedthrough power noise filters are uniquely suited to solve any filtering problem!


Learn More:

Product Family Page – High Current Filters (link)

Article – High Current Filtering, Pt 1 (link to blog post)

Article – High Current Filtering, Pt 2 (link to blog post)

Filter Design Spotlight – High Frequency Filtering Performance (link to blog post)

Filter Design Spotlight – Compact Form Factors (link to blog post)

Resources Page (link)



Compact Form Factors and Unique Packaging Allows Arrestors To Fit In Tight Spaces – Arrestor Design Spotlight

As one of NexTek’s primary product lines, our range of Coaxial Surge Protectors is designed to cover a wide range of potential application requirements with high-performance, military-grade designs that are built using top-notch quality control systems.  One of the many factors that makes NexTek’s line of solutions unique is our use of compact form factor designs and unique physical packaging to provide the optimal solution for even the tightest application!Lightning Arrestor, TNC to SMA, Bulkhead-Mount, DC to 12GHz

Why are Compact Form Factors Important?: Although you may have a requirement for surge or lighting protection, sometimes the space available for installing the solution can be limited.  Space could be limited because your overall radio or system is compact, or due to the fact that surge protection is being added to an existing design (i.e. a retrofit effort.)

How do NexTek Solutions Differ?: There are two major ways that NexTek’s line of arrestor products is unique from other lines that might be available.  ONE – All NexTek designs are optimized to save as much size, weight, and space as reasonably possible.  From our bread-and-butter high volume units to extremely compact 6GHz and 12GHz+ arrestors, our range of solutions features space-saving design.  TWO – NexTek offers modified and customized versions of our standard arrestors to meet any requirements, and can even design a unique solution from the ground-up for the most challenging requirement sets.

TNF-SAF 20G Outline
Ultra-Compact TNC to SMA Surge Protection – DC to 12GHz+

Example of Nextek Methods:  Our TNC to SMA connector surge protection product, the PTCTNFSAF20G is rated to pass RF energy up to 12GHz+.  In fact, it will perform just as well as a high-quality TNC to SMA bulkhead-mount adapter in terms of Insertion Loss and VSWR…It even looks the same as a TNC to SMA bulkhead feedthrough, with a similar overall form factor, length, etc.  However, due to NexTek’s extensive experience and expertise in component selection, we are able to install full-scale Lightning Protection components inside without creating any obvious physical growth relative to a non-protected bulkhead adapter.

Summary: No matter the threat type and level (Lightning, ESD, high-speed EMP,) NexTek has the experience and expertise in-house to learn your specific set of requirements and to select the ideal standard product, modify an existing product, or develop an entirely new custom solution as-needed!  Contact Us for more information!


Learn More:

Coaxial Surge Arrestors (link)

Compact Protection Options (link)

Articles:

Coaxial Surge Protection of High Frequency Lines (.PDF)

Selecting Coaxial Surge Protectors (.PDF)



Are Compact Form Factors Important when Selecting an EMI Filter? – Feedthrough Filter Design Spotlight

High Current Feedthrough Filter - Installation ExampleFeedthrough EMI/RFI filters are available with many different form factors and circuit designs…From simple C-type filters to L-C and multistage “Pi” filters (C-L-C), there is a wide range of solutions that exist on the market. For many applications where space is at a premium, selecting the most compact filter that will meet requirements can be a critical design and component-selection factor!  In other words, compact solutions can be extremely important!

Practical Example: Oftentimes during the design of complex piece of high-power equipment, EMI/RFI testing and compliance must be done well after the initial design and development stages. This can be due to incorrect modeling or estimates of EMI/RFI levels, too little attention being paid the issue in general, or the application of a new requirement sometime down the line. If you are facing the challenge of adding a filter to an existing design and system where there was never a filter previously, filter size becomes critical!

Summary: There is a wide range of available filter designs, form factors, and circuit designs available on the market today, but there are many applications and programs where a Compact Form Factor is just as important to the selection process as the basic filter performance factors (such as xx dB of Insertion Loss and the thru-current rating.)

How do NexTek solutions differ?:  NexTek’s HPR family of high current filters are C-type devices and utilize small form factor capacitors inside, which saves the maximum amount of space, footprint, and weight for a given thru-current rating.  This allows maximum filtering performance with minimal space impact! Continue reading “Are Compact Form Factors Important when Selecting an EMI Filter? – Feedthrough Filter Design Spotlight”


Featured Content & Website Update – NexTek Environmental Policy, REACH & CE Compliance Documents

CE MarkThe most recent uploads to nextek.com include some recently updated Environmental Policy and CE/RoHS/REACH Compliance documents.  All standard products from NexTek, Inc. are fully compliant with relevant EU requirements.  NexTek minimizes or avoids the use of any hazardous materials wherever possible, and our standard range of products have been fully compliant to EU regulations since the day they were designed.

NexTek has supplied thousands of fully REACH, RoHS, and CE compliant devices for integration into systems and applications being used or sold within the EU.  Explore the documents below for additional details.


NexTek Environmental Policy RoHs 2 March 2015 (.PDF)

REACH-NexTek declaration 163 SVHC (.PDF)

CE Declaration of Conformity (.PDF)


Learn more by visiting the new Regulatory Compliance page, which will continue to expand over time!


Product Design Spotlight – EMI Filters: High Frequency Filtering Performance

High Current Feedthrough Filter - Installation ExampleAs one of NexTek’s primary product lines, our range of High Current Feedthrough EMI Filters incorporate some advanced design features which make them unique. NexTek HPR Series filters are high-performance, military-grade designs that are built under stringent quality control systems and procedures. This post will focus on the High Frequency Filtering performance of NexTek’s HPR Series of EMI/RFI filters.

Why does High Frequency Filtering Performance matter?: The primary purpose of a feedthrough EMI/RFI filter is to eliminate radio frequency noise from a power cable. Maintaining adequate filtering performance to 1GHz and above ensures that noise in this frequency range can be effectively removed.

How do NexTek Solutions Differ?: Available high-current feedthrough filter solutions from other manufacturers’ do not use the same type of design, and this means that their filtering performance (as limited by the package and overall design) reaches a peak value and then falls off quickly afterward. In this case, maximum insertion loss is only achieved over a narrow band and the filter’s performance in the upper

C-Type Filter Comparison
C-Type Filter Comparison – NexTek HPRs Use Ceramic Caps (Red Line)

MHz ranges is limited and continues to get worse as the frequency rises.

With the HPR series, the design has been optimized to maintain excellent filtering and loss characteristics to and beyond 1GHz. There is no other C-type filter family available with similarly excellent high-frequency performance.

Practical Example: Let us say that a given power supply is emitting noise in the 500MHz range, and a filter must be found and selected to ensure compliance with an applicable EMI Emissions industry standard. When exploring the market to identify possible solutions, it becomes clear that most feedthrough filters for high-current lines do not maintain maximum filtering performance to 500MHz. On the other hand, NexTek’s HPR series of feedthrough filter designs maintain relatively flat Insertion Loss performance through 1GHz. In this case, the direct filtering level comparison (xx dB down at 500MHz) demonstrates that the HPR series provides superior performance and is well-suited to this application.

Summary: NexTek HPR Series of EMI/RFI feedthrough filters incorporate some advance design techniques that are unique within the industry, allowing high filtering performance to be maintained to extremely high frequency ranges. When this high filtering performance is combined with other design factors such as their compact size, extremely rugged construction, and wide range of available Cap Values and Voltage Ratings…the HPR series of filters are leading-edge solutions.


Learn More:

Product Family Page – High Current Filters (link)

Article – High Current Filtering, Pt 1 (link to blog post)

Article – High Current Filtering, Pt 2 (link to blog post)

Resources Page (link)


 


Product Design Spotlight – Arrestors: Surge Ratings

As one of NexTek’s primary product lines, our range of Coaxial Surge Protectors is designed to cover a wide range of potential application requirements with high-performance, military-grade designs that are built using top-notch quality control systems. This post will focus on Surge Ratings and how they relate to coaxial arrestors.

Why are Surge Ratings Important?: The primary purpose of any surge arrestor is to protect against unwanted damage from Lightning or other sources of transient energy (like Static [ESD], HIRF, or EMP.) The Transient Ratings of a given arrestor allow direct comparisons between alternative options, and also give the ability to match up a solution’s ratings with calculated risk and energy levels.

Full Scale Lightning Testing
Full-Scale Lightning Testing – Gas Discharge Tube Comparison

How do NexTek Solutions Differ?: Over NexTek’s nearly 30 Years of experience in designing surge protectors, there have been countless opportunities to learn, test, modify, and re-test various Arrestor technologies and designs. When full-scale Lightning Surge testing is combined with continuous research and development over this length of time, our design methods and the overall knowledge base from which we draw have been continuously refined and expanded.  From direct strike capable solutions that can handle >200,000 Amps, to fast-responding EMP protection devices which can respond to a transient pulse within nanoseconds…We have experience with them all!

Example of Nextek Methods: NexTek does comparison testing of Gas Discharge Tubes from different suppliers, by testing multiple tubes to their limit and beyond. As a key component used inside a wide array of our designs, relative GDT performance is extremely important to the overall performance of any arrestor it is used in. By doing full-scale Transient Testing to destruction NexTek can determine which suppliers are highest-performing and which are truest to their ratings…All of this adds up to mean that every NexTek arrestor that uses a GDT inside is using the best available protective element…and therefore providing top-tier Transient Performance balanced with excellent RF Performance!

Summary: No matter the threat type and level (Lightning, ESD, high-speed EMP,) NexTek has the expertise to select the ideal standard product, modify an existing product, or develop an entirely new custom solution according to each specific set of needs!

Learn More:
Coaxial Surge Arrestors (link)
Articles:
Coaxial Surge Protection of High Frequency Lines (.PDF)
Selecting Coaxial Surge Protectors (.PDF)

Product Design Spotlight – Arrestors: RF Performance

As one of NexTek’s primary product lines, our range of Coaxial Surge Protectors is designed to cover a wide range of potential application requirements with high-performance designs that use high-quality construction and materials.  One especially important technical aspect of coaxial arrestor design is a given unit’s RF Performance.

RF Performance Curve - VSWR is shown on the upper graph, while Insertion Loss (dB) is shown on the lower curve.
Example RF Performance Curve of a Wideband Quarter Wavelength Stub Arrestor – VSWR is shown on the upper graph, while Insertion Loss (dB) is shown on the lower graph.

Why is RF Performance important?: The primary purpose of any surge arrestor is to protect against unwanted damage from Lightning or other sources of transient energy (like Static [ESD], HIRF, or EMP.) However, during >99.9% of any given arrestor’s lifetime the only goal is to avoid interference with normal system operation… In the case of coaxial surge protection, this means conducting RF signals on the cable’s thru-path with a minimum of loss or performance degradation.

NexTek’s SurgeGuard™ QWS 0500 lightning protector for microwave applications between 5.2 and 18.0GHz.How do NexTek Solutions Differ?: Over NexTek’s nearly 30 Years of experience designing surge protectors, we have built up a knowledge base that allows us to design arrestors with exceptional thru-performance while also ensuring that there is no trade-off in Surge Response or Surge Handling performance. The low-loss wideband characteristics of some of the QSS/QWS family of arrestors is one good example of how NexTek arrestor designs are at the cutting edge of what is available in the marketplace worldwide.

Additional Factors: Not only are the fundamental arrestor designs advanced, but the attention to quality during assembly and pre-delivery testing is also second-to-none. NexTek arrestors are 100% RF Tested during assembly, so that you can have confidence that the product will be ready-to-go as soon as you receive them!

Learn More:
Coaxial Surge Arrestors (link)
Articles:
Coaxial Surge Protection of High Frequency Lines (.PDF)
Selecting Coaxial Surge Protectors (.PDF)