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Comparison of Vector Network Analyser (VNA) calibration techniques at microwave frequencies

Singh, D; Salter, M; Ridler, N M (2019) Comparison of Vector Network Analyser (VNA) calibration techniques at microwave frequencies. NPL Report. TQE 14

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Abstract

This report describes a comparison of some of the most commonly used calibration techniques for the accurate measurement of scattering parameters (S-parameters) using a Vector Network Analyser (VNA) system in coaxial line at microwave frequencies. The report describes the different calibration methods and their applications and compares scattering parameters (S parameters) for a number of different Devices Under Test (DUTs) measured using the same VNA calibrated with the different methods. The investigation was carried out in 3.5 mm coaxial line over the frequency range 100 MHz to 26 GHz.

The most commonly used calibration techniques in coaxial line were investigated including TRL, SOLT, SOLR and ECal. A set of one port and two port devices with a range of S parameter values were measured. To get the most comprehensive set of measurements, one-port devices with very low to very high input impedance and two-port devices with very low to very high attenuation were used.

For each calibration type, the complete set of DUTs were measured six times with a re calibration each time. From the six repeat measurements, the mean and the experimental standard deviation for the magnitude and phase of each S parameter were computed at each frequency and were used to estimate, respectively, the value of the quantity and the variability due to random errors in the measurement of the quantity. The analysis was performed on reflection coefficients for the one-port devices and on both reflection and transmission coefficients for the two-port devices.

The measured data for all the DUTs obtained using all the calibration methods is presented in this report.

This results from this investigation shows typical the random errors from different calibration types for different types of DUTs. These results can be used as guidelines for expected random errors in microwave S parameter measurements as the DUTs used in the investigation covers a large selection of devices and most calibration types.

Item Type: Report/Guide (NPL Report)
NPL Report No.: TQE 14
Keywords: Microwave, Calibration uncertainty, S parameter
Subjects: Electromagnetics > RF and Microwave
Divisions: Electromagnetic & Electrochemical Technologies
Identification number/DOI: 10.47120/npl.TQE14
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2020 10:51
URI: http://eprintspublications.npl.co.uk/id/eprint/8840

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