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P1dB High-Performance Flex Cables

P1dB offers a variety of high-performance flex cables that are suited for test and measurement applications, as well installations that require RF stable cable assemblies. Our cable assemblies utilize coaxial cable designed to offer RF stability for general purpose use, as well as low-loss and phase-stable requirements. Depending on the coax, a variety of connector options are offered.

In order to determine the best cable that meets a specific requirement, first review the coax performance, then select from the connector options

Comparison of Coax Electrical Characteristics

160MP, 190MP and SS141 Coax

P1dB's 160MP, 190MP, and SS141 coax designs are 50 Ohm flex cables with a varying velocity of propagation, from 69.5% to 78%. Their breakdown voltage is in excess of 1 kV, but connector options may reduce the cable assembly max breakdown voltage. The lowest loss, hence a lower operating frequency, is the 190MP coax, with a max operating frequency of 26.5 GHz. The 160MP and the SS141 coax designs operate above 30 GHz, but the 160MP coax is the only design to operate to 40 GHz.

Electrical190MP160MPSS141
Impedance50.0050.0050.00
Velocity of Propagation (%)76.0078.0069.50
Capacitance (pF/ft)25.0026.0029.40
Breakdown Voltage (kV)1.701.201.20
Cutoff Frequency (GHz)26.5040.0033.00
Shielding Effectiveness (dB)>90>90>90

Comparison of RF Attenuation

160MP, 190MP and SS141 Coax

The 190MP coax is the best selection for applications that operate below 27 GHz. Its loss at 26 GHz is only 0.49 fB/ft. The next lowest loss coax is the 160MP, whose low capacitance produces a loss of .65 dB/ft. It is a smaller diameter coax, which is a good alternative when high-performance flex cables are needed. P1dB's SS141 is the most cost-effective high-performance coax, which is best suited for production testing, where phase stability is not as critical.

Attenuation (dB/ft) 190MP 160MP SS141
2.5 GHz 0.16 0.18 0.26
5 GHz 0.20 0.23 0.34
7.5 GHz 0.24 0.29 0.39
10 GHz 0.28 0.33 0.48
12.5 GHz 0.33 0.38 0.56
15 GHz 0.37 0.42 0.62
17.5 GHz 0.41 0.48 0.68
20 GHz 0.45 0.52 0.77
26 GHz 0.49 0.65 0.88
33 GHz N/A 0.74 N/A
40 GHz N/A 0.91 N/A

 

Comparison of Coax Mechanical Characteristics

160MP, 190MP and SS141 Coax

All three flex cables are able to operate at an industrial temperature of -55 to +125° C. The best cable with the smallest bend radius is the 160MP coax, which can support a 0.81-inch bend radius. The 160MP and the SS141 coax cables both have similar weights less than 0.5 oz/ft.

Mechanical 190MP 160MP SS141
Nominal Diameter (in.) 0.195 0.160 0.170
Minimum Bend Radius (in.) 1.00 0.81 1.00
Temperature (deg C) -65 to +204 -65 to +200 -55 to +204
Weight (oz./ft) 0.60 0.48 0.47

Comparison of Coax Construction

160MP, 190MP and SS141 Coax

Construction of the 160MP, 190MP and SS141 coax differ. The MP series coax utilize a microporous dielectric for low loss performance. The 190MP has only 2 shields, while the 160MP and SS141 have an additional shield that will provide the best isolation. All 3 coax designs offer isolation of >90 dB. The 160MP and the 190MP a silver-plated copper center conductor for increased flexibility. All the designs, the 160MP, 190MP, and the SS141, are built with an FEP jacket.

Cable Materials 190MP 160MP SS141
Jacket FEP FEP FEP
Outer Shield Silver Plated Copper

 Silver Plated Copper

Silver Plated Copper
Mid Shield N/A Aluminum Polymide Ribbon Mylar Ribbon
Inner Shield Flat silver plated copper strip Flat silver plated copper strip Flat silver plated copper strip
Dielectric Micro-Porous PTFE Micro-Porous PTFE Solid PTFE
Center Conductor Silver Plated Copper Silver Plated Copper Silver Plated Copper Clad Steel

Connector Options

2.92mm, SMA, N, TNC, and More

 P1dB connectors installed on high-performance coax are all precision designs that are build using Passivated Stainless Steel. Their contacts are Beryllium Copper for an increased life cycle. Standard connector options are 2.92mm, SMA, N, and TNC connectors, but other connector options are available upon request. The standard connector codes are shown below:

 

Coax Code
2.92mm Male SMA Male
(27 GHz)
SMA Male Right Angle SMA Female
N Male
N Male
Right Angle

N Female
TNC Male
190MP

29M (27 GHZ)

SAM
SAMRA

SAF

NM
NMRA
NF
TNM
160MP
29M (40 GHz)
SAM

SS141

SAM
SAMRA
SAF
NM
NMRA
NF
TNM
Build a Part Number 
Follow the steps below to build a high-performance cable assembly
1. Choose the preferred coax.
2. Select the connector codes from the above table. The 1st connector in the part number is the one that is the leftmost option in the table. For example, when building an SMA Female to 2.92mm Male, the 2.92mm connector must go 1st in the part number. The connector codes would, therefore, be 29MSAF.
3. Determine the desired length in inches or in centimeters.

P1CA-CON1CON2-COAX-XXX
                                                                CON1 = Connector 1 Code
                                                                CON2 = Connector 2 Code
                                                                COAX = Coax Code
                                                                XXX    = Length in inches (12 inches = 12) or centimeters (12 cm = 12CM)