Articles | Volume 6
26 May 2008
 | 26 May 2008

Calibration-measurement unit for the automation of vector network analyzer measurements

I. Rolfes, B. Will, and B. Schiek

Abstract. With the availability of multi-port vector network analyzers, the need for automated, calibrated measurement facilities increases. In this contribution, a calibration-measurement unit is presented which realizes a repeatable automated calibration of the measurement setup as well as a user-friendly measurement of the device under test (DUT). In difference to commercially available calibration units, which are connected to the ports of the vector network analyzer preceding a measurement and which are then removed so that the DUT can be connected, the presented calibration-measurement unit is permanently connected to the ports of the VNA for the calibration as well as for the measurement of the DUT. This helps to simplify the calibrated measurement of complex scattering parameters. Moreover, a full integration of the calibration unit into the analyzer setup becomes possible. The calibration-measurement unit is based on a multiport switch setup of e.g. electromechanical relays. Under the assumption of symmetry of a switch, on the one hand the unit realizes the connection of calibration standards like one-port reflection standards and two-port through connections between different ports and on the other hand it enables the connection of the DUT. The calibration-measurement unit is applicable for two-port VNAs as well as for multiport VNAs. For the calibration of the unit, methods with completely known calibration standards like SOLT (short, open, load, through) as well as self-calibration procedures like TMR or TLR can be applied.