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RF Microwave Solutions

What is RF and Microwave Switching & What Purpose Does it Serve?

A RF (Radio Frequency) and microwave interface unit is a device that routes high frequency signals between RF test instrumentation and devices under test. . These are used in microwave test systems for signal routing and conditioning. Configuration options for these switches include:

  • Single-pole-double-throw (SPDT) switches
  • Multiport or single-pole-multiple-throw (SPnT) switches
  • Transfer or double-pole-double-throw (DPDT) switches
  • Bypass switches
  • Filters, attenuators, combiners, and power splitters

Incorporating a RF and microwave interface unit into a PXI Express, LXI or VXI-based test system enables you to route signals from multiple instruments to single or multiple devices that need to be tested. This allows multiple tests to be performed with the same setup, eliminating the need for frequent connects and disconnects and allowing for easy automation – all which saves tremendous amounts of time and money.


Specifying and designing microwave switching and distribution systems and instrumentation can be difficult. This is partially due to the fact that microwave and RF switching systems are complicated by nature. In other cases, engineers do their design work the hard way. Engineers may spend 5 days calling vendors and doing research on microwave switch components, 5 days working on a bill of materials, 5 days working on a wire list, 30 days configuring the software and instrument drivers, and 20 days designing a graphical interface. Conventional wisdom may dictate that this is the only reasonable way to get the job done, but VTI Instruments has found a more efficient way of bringing a design from concept to production.


At VTI, our team is experienced in the field of RF and microwave switching and signal conditioning, and we offer a range of possibilities. Here are a few options:

  • We can provide the EX7000-OEM developer’s kit that allows you to embed industry standard technology within your own designs. We provide a base platform with essential I/O functionality, and you build your design on top of it.
  • We can provide a standard chassis and some world-class parts that you configure to build a custom design.
  • Your microwave switch design can be built out of standard LXI slices.
  • You can let us configure and build a RF switch design to your specifications.

For every option, our goal is to get you what you need with minimal headaches, and maximized time efficiency.


When many engineers design microwave switching systems, the documentation process often becomes neglected in the interest of getting the job done. And once one of your engineers moves to a different project or leaves the company, you have lost critical knowledge of how your systems work. When you work with the team at VTI, our methodology provides all of the documentation you’ll need for long-term use and support without any extra effort on your part.

You’ll also get to focus your time and energy on testing your equipment instead of contriving a microwave switching or testing apparatus. Because we are experts in building RF and microwave switching devices, leaving the RF switch instrumentation to us can dramatically reduce your project timeline.

We eliminate most of the software development problems that are normally associated with designing test instruments. Our services are cost-effective, reliable, and customer-oriented. If you’re interested in RF and microwave switching, contact VTI today to get started.