Dow-Key Switch Solution


ATEDow-Key® Microwave focuses heavily on providing the best and most reliable switching systems to the ATE industry and we have been successful to this end since 1999. In automated test systems, the critical role that switching segments play in the overall testing is often overlooked and taken for granted. The performance of a test system is only as good as the switches routing the signal, even with the most sophisticated test instrument.
We take pride in our ATE switch solutions which allow the user to test UUT’s/DUT’s without concern about the switching segment – we will take care of it for you. Our ATE Switch Matrix solutions are available from DC up to 40 GHz and are offered with various software interfaces with minimum effort needed to control the switch matrix.Our stand alone high performance coaxial switches for ATE applications are available with long cycle life and an insertion loss repeatability of 0.03 dB across DC to 26.5 GHz frequency band. For high-speed applications, our DC to 40 GHz switches are ideal for use in test & measurement applications.


Standard Features and Capabilities for Switch Matrices:

Dow-Key’s switch matrix platform is engineered around a flexible and efficient modular system architecture comprised of a series of brackets, panels and electronic-boards that are universal among all Dow-Key® electromechanical models. Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) solutions are not only cost effective, but can also easily be re-configured by adding RF switches to a single enclosure – from simple to complex combinations. The platform is easily field up-gradable and repairable.


Cost Effective Solution

  • Flexible and efficient system architecture
  • Compact physical form
  • Multiple switch configurations in one box
  • Same software control and command protocols across products
  • Trouble-free maintenance (for field upgrades and repairs)


Features and Capabilities:

Our matrices consist of building blocks:

  • 1U/2U/ 3U/4U rack mountable chassis or larger
  • Easy access to power supply and control card
  • Redundant power supplies (optional)
  • Highly scalable where it can easily support smaller to larger RF switches and configurations by cascading units and adding master/slave control software
  • LCD with Keypad or Touch Screen LCD for manual control
  • Ethernet (TCP/IP) with HTTP-Server or GPIB: with the addition of Lab View based GUI software, RS-232 port and USB port remote control interfaces
  • Fast switch time at system level
  • Keeps track of the switch life via a counter
  • Field upgradable firmware via boot loader
  • All electronic components and CANbus switches are RoHS compliant
  • EMI shielded Ethernet, USB and CAN bus connectors
  • Other passive or active components may be used on design basis

Download our Switching Systems Capability Guide or Switching System Solutions catalog for more details.

MS-Control Kit
MS-Control Kit
The MS-ENET and MS-GPIB kits are low budget solutions best suited for ATE, test bench and system integrated applications, catering to users who are comfortable assembling components on their own. Depending on the type of control, there are two kits available. Either kit consists of an Ethernet/GPIB control board and 12x RJ11-4 straight cables (to be used with Dow-Key CAN bus switches). To learn more, download our catalog for more details

MS-Series: Our MS- series consists of multiple switches mounted on the rear panel that can be reconfigured with SPDT, transfer DPDT, SP3T, SP4T, SP6T, SP8T, SP10T and SP12T switches. We can also populate any number of CANbus switches in a 19″ rack chassis (within size constraints) and mix the type of switches as needed per the user’s test frame. To learn more, download our Electromechanical Matrix products.
MS-Series: The Miniature MS-series is a compact solution with a size not exceeding the dimensions 6.29” x 3.30” x 7.05”; making it ideal for bench top Test & Measurement applications. It is equipped with high performance switches with 0.03 dB insertion loss repeatability across DC to 26.5 GHz, and a minimum of 10 Million Life Cycles with SPDT switches and 5 Million Life Cycles with the SP6T switches. A combination of these switches can be mounted on the front panel and controlled with Ethernet and Web-based GUI control. To learn more, download our MMS-Series Data Sheet.

MP-Series: Our multiplexer switch matrices offer the capability to route one input to as many as 143 outputs (bidirectional) from DC to 18 GHz and smaller configurations for solutions operating up to 40 GHz. It is available with both SMA and N type RF connectors and terminated/non-terminated I/O ports. To learn more, download our Electromechanical Matrix products .


cb-seriesDow-Key® understands that the need to switch between more complex test setups may be required, therefore the CB-series crossbar matrix is an excellent choice. It allows the user to test UUT’s with multiple input and output ports without having to connect and disconnect it from the test setup. The CB-series can switch an input signal to any unique output port at a given time. The largest standard configuration is up to 12 inputs by 12 outputs and operates to 18 GHz. For a 26.5 GHz solution, the CB-series crossbar matrix is available with 8 inputs by 8 outputs. To learn more, download our Electromechanical Matrix products.

Reliant SwitchTM-Series
reliant switch seriesReliant SwitchTM-Series: Dow-Key® offers a switch solution ideal for Test & Measurement applications, combining excellent electrical and mechanical performance over a broad frequency band. with high isolation, low VSWR, a minimum of 10 million life cycles for SPDT’s, 5 million cycles for SP6T’s, and with an exceptional 0.03 dB insertion loss repeatability. The first release of the Reliant Switch™ product line is a SPDT coaxial switch with terminated or non-terminated options. To learn more, see Reliant SwitchTM page
40 GHz Switch Series
4 ghz switch series40 GHz Switch Series: For high-speed applications such as testing SERDES, using coaxial switches to switch between the many DUT I/O ports is ideal. Dow-Key® offers DC to 40 GHz SPDT, DPDT and SP3T thru SP6T switches with failsafe, normally open and latching actuator options (depending on switch type) along with 1W termination if required. To learn more, see catalog.