Miniature Reed Relays For High-Frequency RF Systems

By Sharad Bhowmick

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Series 113RF from Pickering Electronics is a new miniature coaxial reed relay for high-frequency RF systems. The newly launched Series 113RF relays are smaller and much faster than the electromechanical relays (EMR), moreover, these relays offer lower insertion loss and better hot switching performance than the micro-electromechanical machines (MEM) making these relays suitable for designing compact modules. Series 113RF reed relays are suitable for switching up to 10W, 0.5A. Furthermore, these relays are developed for high-frequency RF systems up to 3GHz making it suitable for applications such as automatic test equipment and digital switching systems that demand low RF losses and low insertion loss.

According to the company, Series 113RF have a high life expectancy of greater than 250 million reliable operations. The reed relays use the best in class reed switches with sputtered ruthenium contacts. It also features an internal mu-metal magnetic screen to enable high-density stacking of relays without the risk of adjacent devices interfering with each other resulting in faulty operation.

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When asked, “When would reed relays be the best solution for RF and high speed, digital switching systems?” Kevin Mallett, Technical Specialist at Pickering Electronics answered: “These small, screened reed relays are faster and smaller than electromechanical relays (EMR), have a lower insertion loss and better DC capabilities than solid state relays (SSR), and better hot switching performance than micro-electromechanical machine (MEM) products.”

The Series 113 offers a high insulation resistance greater than 1012 ohms and the embedded mu-metal screen totally eliminates the risk of magnetic interaction problems. Series 113RF reed relays are suitable for switching up to 10W, 0.5A. 1 Form A configurations (SPST normally open) are available with 3V or 5V coils with coil resistances of up to 100/300 ohms respectively.


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