portunities for problems from cable
movement, loose connectors, etc.
• With the new method, a full in-situ calibration is always performed,
because it is so fast. This removes the
accumulated errors of multiple S-parameter calibrations, and eliminates
• With the new method, there is
minimal drift due to the short calibration and measurement times.
• With the new method, a dense frequency selection is used to eliminate
aliasing, because it is fast.
• Smoothing was not shown in any of
the data here, but the dense frequency selection would make smoothing
meAsuRement time CompARison of the new method veRsus the
25 hrs, 29 min
2 hrs, 24 min
2 hrs, 22 min 3 min, 15 seconds
30 hrs, 15 min 8 min, 7 seconds
Time Ratio 224X
Estimated, based on time to measure per frequency
1 min, 56 seconds
2 min, 56 seconds
3 min, 12 seconds
10 min, 44 seconds
13 hrs, 2 min
10 min, 54 seconds
166 hrs, 14 min 24 min, 50 seconds
Production testing of noise parameters has never been an option with
the traditional measurement method
because of long measurement times.
However, the speed and simplicity of
the new method opens up new possibilities in manufacturing applications.
Production testing of known parts may
not require many frequencies, so the
measurement time for each device
could be less than 30 seconds. Provid-
ing noise-parameter specifications or
measured data for each part makes
products more competitive and more
valuable to customers. Circuit design-
ers can use the noise parameters to
better predict noise performance of
devices in mismatched environments,
or to design better matching circuits. In
addition, test data allows manufactur-
ers to sort for performance, and to track
production runs for continuous process
improvement, providing an overall
higher level of quality assurance.
The new ultra-fast noise parameter
measurement method provides more
than two orders of magnitude speed
improvement, and more accurate data
with a simpler setup that does not require a highly skilled operator. The fast
measurements virtually eliminate drift,
greatly reduce measurement scatter,
and allow dense frequency spacing,
providing more accurate and more
complete data, and better insight into
device noise performance. n
The authors thank Lynn Rhymes of
Agilent Technologies Inc., Santa Rosa,
CA, for supplying the connectorized
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