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Calibrating network analysers more accurately

30.06.2008
Manufacturers of high-frequency technology as, for example, mobile telephone system or telecommunications devices use network analysers during production for quality control in order to check the reflection and transmission behaviour of components.

In order to calibrate the network analysers (which is necessary before each measurement is made), mechanical or electronic calibration kits are employed. The Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) has now established a method which enables a simple, traced back verification of a conventional network analyser calibration and, moreover, a more accurate secondary calibration.

The procedure is based on a single VNA measurement employing a high precision airline. From this measurement, the error characteristics of the VNA are determined over the entire frequency range using a sophisticated estimation procedure. Virtual experiments were used to optimally tune the parameters of the estimation procedure.

The novel calibration procedure has been confirmed by a comparison with an established but involved reference method. The novel calibration procedure now enables high-accurate calibrations of VNAs at low costs, as well as easy performance checks of mechanical calibration kits and electronic calibration units.

Scientific Paper:
http://www.ptb.de/de/aktuelles/archiv/nachrichten/2008/judaschke_
arftg2007_proc_neu.pdf
The scientific news on the webpages of the two PTB division which are involved:
http://www.ptb.de/en/aktuelles/archiv/nachrichten/2008/_vna-2.html
http://ib.ptb.de/en/org/8/Nachrichten8/2008/grundlagen/vektornetzwerk.html

Erika Schow | alfa
Further information:
http://www.ptb.de

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