Product Testing for Telecommunications
The telecommunications industry is currently undergoing massive technical and business developments. As the great majority of companies work to address the needs of aging legacy networks, they must also navigate challenges of how to develop new internet protocols, or IP, and multimedia service options. These new services don’t just represent a slight improvement over previous and existing services — they’re the future lifeblood of many companies’ competitive business models.
To keep up with the demands of the telecommunications industry, network and telecom equipment manufacturers need to continuously offer a wider range of value-adding products that showcase their innovations and enhanced product reliability, as well as their ability to get to market faster.
However, before going to market in this highly competitive environment, companies have to thoroughly prove the quality of any product — or the results could be disastrous. Just think of costly product recalls and the effects of a large-scale erosion of consumer confidence.
This is why the prudent choice for equipment manufacturers in the telecommunications sector is to work with an experienced testing laboratory like Quality Testing Services, LLC. We have both the engineering experience and the telecom expertise to understand what types of tests your products need to be trustworthy and capable of generating revenue for your company.
Having successfully designed and completed product tests for various major telecom and communications companies — including DirectTV, L3 Communications, Motorola and Spirent Communications, to name a few — we have never lost our ability to be adaptable and give all our customers the attention and service they deserve.
HALT Testing for Telecommunications
In today’s competitive business climate, it’s not unusual to have millions of dollars riding on the release of just one product in the telecommunications sector. Consider the amount of financial fanfare and the impact on markets when a new smartphone or other communication device is launched. Therefore, when so much hinges on the successful outcome of each product in the industry, one of the most useful tests we run for manufacturers is HALT — or Highly Accelerated Life Testing.
HALT testing is a proven method of discovering weaknesses or flaws early in a product’s lifecycle — prior to its going to market. Moreover, for companies working under tight deadlines, HALT testing offers a much more time-efficient way of evaluating a product for failures and flaws than more involved and lengthy tests like Environmental Stress Screening and Design Verification Testing.
By putting an item through incrementally increasing amounts of stress, HALT testing can pinpoint the weakest spot or component in a product in just minutes or hours. In contrast, the previously mentioned tests can take days or even weeks — and still not produce conclusive results.
For telecommunications manufacturers looking for a top-quality product, HALT testing is undeniably the way to get there. Since the test isn’t based on a pass or fail outcome, but instead is designed to continue until a failure in the product’s weakest link, it’s highly useful for products in the early stages of design and construction, where changes can be made to make the product more robust.
We perform all HALT testing in specially designed test chambers. These are specifically created to expose workpieces to the temperature, vibration and combination of stresses that the test requires.
The following steps are part of comprehensive HALT testing:
- Hot thermal step stress
- Cold thermal step stress
- Rapid thermal cycling
- Vibration step stress
- Combined environment
HASS Testing for Telecommunications
As a product moves from its early concept and design phases into its production phase, the materials and processes used in its manufacturing can still cause defects that adversely impact its quality. For this reason, HASS — or Highly Accelerated Stress Screening — is commonly performed on telecommunications products once design flaws have been identified and mitigated through HALT.
We perform our HASS testing services after we’ve carried out HALT testing, and the product moves into its production phase. This testing is used to identify manufacturing defects and validate that the product specifications haven’t changed since the final product design.
While both HALT and HASS testing are forms of Accelerated Stress Testing, HASS testing uses the results of HALT as parameters for the new screening. It exposes the newly manufactured product to a shorter stress test at levels well below the previous HALT test to check for changes that could have occurred in the manufacturing facility.
HASS testing’s application of thermal, vibration and combined stresses conservatively stresses the product without decreasing its life expectancy. This helps manufacturers discover product defects that would otherwise occur in out-of-the-box situations with its customers. Clearly, avoiding such defects is well worth the time and effort HASS testing requires.