Characteristic Impedance Silicon Transistor- RF Cafe Forums
Post subject: Characteristic impedance silicon
transistor Posted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 11:19 pm
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:16 am
I am designing
a UHF transmitter for the sake of learning an interest.
question is: Do the surface mount components i.e transistors, I
place on the PCB, take on the characteristic impedance of the PCB
or do they have a characteristic impedance of 50 ohm?
example, the datasheet for the BFR182 surface mnt transistor provides
S parameters and indicates that the S parameters provided were measured
with a characteristic impedance, Zo of 50ohm.
The PCB I will
be using I calculate to have a 116ohm Zo.
It is not practical
to design a PCB with a Zo of 50ohm.
Do I calculate the impedances
of my transistor using the Zo of 50ohm, or do I calculate the impedances
of the transistor using the PCB Zo of 116 ohm? Thankyou
Post subject: S ParametersPosted: Wed
Feb 28, 2007 3:27 am
Joined: Wed Feb
22, 2006 3:51 pm
You seem to be missing
the relationship between impedance and S parameters.
a quick review: to measure impedance, you apply a stimulus (a voltage
or current) and measure the resulting value (a current, if a voltage
is applied, or a voltage if a current is applied).
how DC Ohmmeters work, but it gets difficult at VHF and higher frequencies
because we can neither
1. generate an approximately-ideal voltage
or current, nor
2. measure a current or voltage without interaction.
The problem is stray capacitance and stray inductance. For
example, a mere 1 pF in parallel at 1 GHz can cause huge errors
in measuring impedances.
So if you can't measure voltages
or currents accurately, what can you measure? The short answer is
power. A slightly longer answer is "reflected or forward power".
You do this using transmission lines rather than plain wires, of
course, and it turns out that we can measure both the power and
the angle it's at.
For this measurement to be exact, you
need to know the characteristic impedance of the transmission line.
If you use coaxial cable, this is usually either 50 or 75 Ohms.
If you're using microstrip on PCB material, the characteristic impedance
is controllable by the designer, by selecting the width of the line
and the thickness of the material.
Of course, for a 50 Ohm
system, you need a signal generator with an accurate 50 Ohm output
impedance (for the stimulus), and an accurate 50 Ohm load. And you'll
also need one or more directional couplers, and some way of measuring
So suppose that we have a 50 Ohm generator, connected
to 50 Ohm coax, connected to a 75 Ohm resistor, connected to a 50
Ohm load. The impedance at the resistor will be 75 Ohms in parallel
with 50 Ohms, so where the resistor is connected the impedance will
be less than 50 Ohms.
Where the impedance changes, power
is reflected. You can measure this power with a directional coupler.
An Agilent 8510 Vector Network Analyzer ($$$) is a couple of glorified
directional couplers, with a source and power meter.
the input S parameter is in a 50 Ohm system, is the reflection coefficient
(expressed as a magnitude and a phase) seen by a 50-Ohm line connected
to the transistor input.
You can calculate the actual input
impedance if you know S11 and Z0, the system's characteristic impedance.
I posted the formulas in two recent threads here on RF Cafe-Circuits
Forum, the 50-to-75 Ohm thread, and the amplifier circuit design
thread - I won't repeat them here unless asked.
a couple of just-simply-wrong statements in your posting. Here are
some related facts:
1. Designers use 50 Ohm microstrip (=PCB
traces) every day of the year - it's not hard at all. For a calculator,
you can go to www.ultracad.com or check any number of books.
2. PCB's do not have an impedance - the impedance is a function
of the line width and board thickness over the ground plane. People
try to restrict the range to about 25-100 Ohms, but you can get
higher or lower values.
Transistors NEITHER take on the characteristic
impedance of the circuit they're used with, nor do they themselves
have a characteristic impedance. The input and output impedances,
and the forward and reverse gains, are all functions of the operating
voltages and currents.
I hope this helps.
Post subject: Posted:
Wed Feb 28, 2007 9:53 am
Feb 27, 2007 6:16 am
So to determine
what my input and output impedances of components are, I simply
base my calculation on the given S parameters, input/output reflection
coeffs and convert this to Z parameters and then multiply by the
Zo of 50 given in the datasheets?
What about the transistors
legs? Surely the S parameters of the transistor would change depending
on the characteristic impedance of the PCB it was placed on and
the length of the transistors legs?
Ive been using
to calculate my characteristic impedance. The values used are
20 mil track width.
63mil or 1.6mm board thickness.
Zo = 113ohms
If I want a 50ohm characteristic
impedance on this board(pref.)
my track width would have to be
120mil or otherwise use a 30mil thick board and 50mil wide tracks.
Again this track width is too large.
What values do more
experienced designers use? Different materials for the pcb perhaps?
Your help is very much appreciated. Cheers
Post subject: Transistor amplifiersPosted: Wed
Feb 28, 2007 1:21 pm
Joined: Wed Feb
22, 2006 3:51 pm
for the microstrip calculator! The folks at UM-Rolla are pretty
sharp, and very helpful.
I'm a bit puzzled, though - on what
grounds is a 50 mil trace "too wide"?
You have two choices
for impedance matching:
1. lumped components (inductors and
2. transmission lines.
If you're in
the frequency range where you can use lumped components (and with
modern SMT parts, that range is moving upward!), not all traces
need to be 50 Ohm microstrip. One "rule of thumb" is that a segment
less than 1/10 of a wavelength won't affect things too much. That's
one advantage of computer programs - you can include the interconnections
as circuit elements when you do your analysis. (Still, with modern
transistors, 1/10 wavelength may be at a much higher frequency than
your chosen operating frequency, so care is necessary!)
you surmise, designers often use other materials - if you read the
literature and the on-line material, you'll find lots of references
to materials made by Rogers - ROxxxx, where xxxx is a number.