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Oct 24-Oct 28, 2016 - San Jose, CA / Bob Froelich

$1,995 until 09/28/2016

Switching from traditional circuit definitions based on voltages and currents, to power-flow concepts and scattering parameters, this course offers a smooth transition into the wireless domain. We review S-parameter measurements and applications for both single-ended (unbalanced) and balanced circuits and have a brief introduction to RF systems and their components.

Impedance matching is vitally important in RF systems and we use both graphical (Smith Chart ) and analytical techniques throughout the course. We also examine discrete and monolithic component models in their physical forms, discussing parasitic effects and losses, revealing reasons why circuit elements behave in surprising manners at RF.

Filters, resonant circuits and their applications are reviewed through filter tables and modern synthesis techniques, leading into matching networks and matching filter structures.
Since wires and printed circuit conductors may behave as transmission line elements, we also cover microstrip and stripline realizations. 2D and 2,5D electromagnetic field simulators are used in the course to illustrate transmission line behavior and component coupling effects.

In the area of active circuits, we first examine fundamental limitations posed by noise and distortion. The next topic is small-signal linear amplifier design, based on scattering parameter techniques, considering input/output match and gain flatness RF stability is examined both with S-parameters and also with the Nyquist test using nonlinear device models. Since DC biasing affects RF performance, we review active and passive bias circuits and see how they can be combined with impedance matching circuits. Another important consideration is circuit layout, therefore we look at problems caused by coupling, grounding and parasitic resistance. Narrow- and broadband designs are compared, using lossless and lossy impedance matching as well as feedback circuits. Low-noise amplifier design is illustrated, discussing trade-offs among gain flatness, noise, RF stability, and impedance match. Harmonic and inter-modulation performance is also examined. Performance trade-offs of balanced amplifiers are viewed. The course concludes by examining large-signal and ultra wideband feedback amplifiers.

Students are encouraged to bring their laptop computers to class. The design software available for use in this public course is from NI (formerly AWR).

Upon completing the course you will be able to:

- Describe RF circuit parameters and terminology.
- State the effects of parasitics on circuit performance at RF.
- Use graphical design techniques and the Smith Chart.
- Match impedances and perform transformations.
- Design filters with lumped and distributed components.
- Perform statistical analysis: design centering, yield optimization.
- Predict RF circuit stability and stabilize circuits.
- Design various RF amplifiers: small-signal, low-noise, and feedback.

The course is designed for practicing engineers who are involved with the production, test, and development of RF/Wireless components, circuits, sub-systems, and systems, in the 100-4000 MHz frequency range. It is equally useful to new engineers and to those who may have practical experience but have not had opportunity of getting a thorough foundation of modern, computer-oriented RF circuit techniques.

Engineering degree or at least three years applicable practical experience is recommended.