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a) Decibels of isolation b) Isometric radiation in decibels c) Decibels of gain relative to an isotropic radiator d) Intrinsic gain in decibels

2. For which region of space does antenna gain normally apply? a) Near field b) Far field c) At the feed point d) Everywhere

Elevation Pattern Azimuth Pattern 3. For which type of antenna does the pattern to the right describe? a) Parabolic b) Yagi c) 1/2-wave dipole d) 1/4-wave vertical whip

4. What is the free space impedance that an antenna "sees?" a) 50 b) 75 c) 16p (50 ) d) 120p (377 )

5. What is the name given to the point where the RF input signal interfaces to the antenna? a) ICP (input connection point) b) Feed-point c) BNC connector d) N connector

6. Where is the approximate transition point between near field and far field? a) / (2p) b) c) 5 d) 10

7. What is an isotropic radiator? a) An antenna that radiates equally in all directions b) An antenna with equal dimensions c) An antenna designed to broadcast in the troposphere d) None of the above

8. Which type of antenna would typically have the highest directivity? a) 1/4-wave whip b) Folded dipole c) Yagi d) Parabolic

9. On a center-fed 1/2-wave dipole, where is the voltage potential the highest? a) In the center b) At the tips c) Equal everywhere d) Nowhere - dipoles operate on current

10. Yagi antennas are constructed of which three types of elements? a) Transmitter, receiver, and transceiver b) Underdriven, driven, and overdriven c) Reflector, driven, and director d) Aluminum, iron, and magnesium

Answers:

1. What does dBi, the most often used unit for antenna gain (or directivity), stand for? c) Decibels of gain relative to an isotropic radiator An isotropic radiator is theoretically a point source (dimensionless), and therefore distributes the input power uniformly across the entire spherical volume surrounding it. Directivity concentrates the input power in a preferred direction, leaving less power to be radiated in the not-preferred directions.

2. For which region of space does antenna gain normally apply? b) Far field Almost without exception, specified antenna gain refers to the far field. The common sense proof is that if you had two antennas with a gain of, say, 10 dBi, and placed them face-to-face, you would not realize a gain of 20 dB in signal power while the path loss would be negligible. One exception would be NFC (near field communications) antennas which are designed to use combinations of inductive and/or magnetic coupling to transfer the signal.

Elevation Pattern Azimuth Pattern 3. For which type of antenna does the pattern to the right describe? c) 1/2-wave dipole See Antenna Patterns page for more patterns.

4. What is the free space impedance that an antenna "sees?" d) 120p (377 )

Z0 =

= 120p (0 = 4p 10

-7

Henries/m, 0 = 8.854 x 10

-12

Farads/m)

5. What is the name given to the point where the RF input signal interfaces to the antenna? b) Feed-point This is where the signal conductors physically attach to the antenna's radiating element structure.

6. Where is the approximate transition point between near field and far field? a) / (2p) The explanation is a bit complex, so please see this link on the Conformity site for details.

7. What is an isotropic radiator? a) An antenna that radiates equally in all directions See Q1.

8. Which type of antenna would typically have the highest directivity? d) Parabolic Depending on the size, degree of curvature, and the edge properties of the parabolic dish, gain (directivity, which is generally interchangeable with gain for high efficiencies) can be very high. See Antenna Patterns page for gain ranges of various antenna types.

9. On a center-fed 1/2-wave dipole, where is the voltage potential the highest? b) At the tips (see diagram to right). Intuitively, at the tips of the antenna the current has nowhere to flow, so I = 0 there. The 1/2-wave dipole acts like a capacitor where the voltage lags the current by 90. As a result, the voltage is at maximum magnitude at the tips.

10. Yagi antennas are constructed of which three types of elements? c) Reflector, driven, and director The Yagi, or Yagi-Uda, is constructed similar to the one shown to the right. One or more reflector elements are behind the driven element, and one or more director elements are in front of the driven element. Design your own at the DXZone website.

2. What happens to the noise figure of a receiver when a 10 dB attenuator is added at the input? a) Noise figure increases by 10 dB b) Noise figure decreases by 10 dB c) Noise figure doesn't change

3. An RF system has a linear throughput gain of +10 dB and an output 3rd-order intercept point (OIP3) of +30 dBm. What is the input 3rd-order intercept point (IIP3)? a) +20 dBm b) +40 dBm c) +30 dBm

4. Which filter type has the greatest selectivity for a given order (i.e., N=5)? a) Bessel b) Chebyshev (ripple=0.1 dB) c) Butterworth

5. Which mixer spurious product is a 5th-order product? a) 1*LO + 5*RF b) 6*LO - 1*RF c) 3*LO - 2*IF

6. A 2.8 GHz oscillator is phase-locked to a 10 MHz reference oscillator that has a single-sided phase noise of -100 dBc at 1 kHz offset. What is the single-sided phase noise of the 2.8 GHz oscillator at 1 kHz offset? a) -48.6 dBc b) -100 dBc c) -51.1 dBc

7. What is the power of a 2 Vpk-pk sine wave across a 50 ohm load? a) -20.0 dBm b) +10.0 dBm c) +19.0 dBm

8. Which 2-port S-parameter is commonly referred to as "reverse isolation" in an amplifier? a) S21 b) S22 c) S12

9. What are the minimum and maximum combined VSWR limits at an interface characterized by a 1.25:1 VSWR and a 2.00:1 VSWR? a) 1.75:1 (min), 2.25:1 (max) b) 1.60:1 (min), 2.50:1 (max) c) 0.75:1 (min), 3.25:1 (max)

10. An ideal directional coupler has a directivity of 25 dB and an isolation of 40 dB. What is its coupling value? a) 65 dB b) 40 dB c) 15 dB

Answers: 1. What is the impedance of free space? b) 120 (376.991) ohms Impedance is defined as the square root of the ratio of the permeability (mu, ) to the permittivity (epsilon, ) - in this case of free space. 0 = 1/(36 ) * 10 0 = 4 * 10

-7 -9

F/m

-7

9 2 2

z0 = sqrt [0 / 0] = sqrt [4 * 10

2. What happens to the noise figure of a receiver when a 10 dB attenuator is added at the input? a) Noise figure increases by 10 dB The formula for cascaded noise figure is: NF(M stages) = 10*log [nf1 + (nf2-1)/(gain1) + (nf3-1)/(gain1*gain2) + ... + (nfM-1)/(gain1*gain2*...*gainM-1)]; where each "nf" and "gain" value is expressed as a ratio rather than in dB, and M is the total number of stages. The noise figure of an attenuator is equal to its insertion loss (10 dB in this case). Note that per the equation that the noise figure of the first element in the chain is not modified by the gain of preceding stages - as are the subsequent stages' noise figures. Therefore, any noise figure added to the front end adds directly to the overall system noise figure - in this case an increase of 10 dB.

3. An RF system has a linear throughput gain of +10 dB and an output 3rd-order intercept point (OIP3) of +30 dBm. What is the input 3rd-order intercept point (IIP3)? a) +20 dBm A system's 3rd-order intercept points are determined by the components between its input and output. As with the input signal power, the system's gain modifies the output intercept point values. Simply add the gain to the IIP3 to arrive at the OIP3. +30 dBm - 10 dB = +20 dBm

4. Which filter type has the greatest selectivity for a given order (i.e., N=5)? b) Chebyshev (ripple=0.1 dB) Many texts exist that list the transfer functions of the major filter types. Rather than attempt to reiterate them all here, the following list presents them in order of increasing selectivity. The price to be paid for increased selectivity is a greater slope in the group delay near the band edges (bad for digital communications). 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Bessel (Bessel-Thompson) Gaussian (only slightly greater than Bessel) Butterworth Chebyshev Elliptic (a.k.a. Cauer-Chebyshev, or CC)

5. Which mixer spurious product is a 5th-order product? c) 3*LO - 2*IF The order of any product is (j*LO k*IF) simply the sum of the harmonic orders of the two signals that create it. In this example, the 3rd harmonic of the LO (local oscillator) and the 2nd harmonic of the IF (intermediate frequency) combine to generate the 5th-order product. The mathematical sign of the operation does not affect the order so that Order = | j | + | k |. Order = | 3 | + | -2 | = 5

6. A 2.8 GHz oscillator is phase-locked to a 10 MHz reference oscillator that has a single-sided phase noise of -100 dBc at 1 kHz offset. What is the single-sided phase noise of the 2.8 GHz oscillator at 1 kHz offset? a) -48.6 dBc When an oscillator (2.8 GHz in this case) is phase-locked (PLO) to a reference source (10 MHz in this case), the phase noise is increased in amplitude by an amount equal to 20*log (fPLO/fRef) + 2.5 dB, where the additional 2.5 dB (rule of thumb) is due to phase noise added by the phase locking circuitry. This explains why an extremely low phase noise reference oscillator is required when being used with a microwave frequency PLO. -100 dBc + [20*log (2800/10) + 2.5] dB = -48.6 dBc

b) +10.0 dBm Power in a sine wave is based on its rms voltage and the impedance it is imposed across. The rms value of a sine wave's peak-to-peak value is equal to its peak value divided by the square root of two. Rather than trying to remember whether to use 20*log or 10*log for conversion to decibels (a real stumbling point for a lot of people), just remember to always use 10* log when dealing with power and calculate power first using Ohm's Law (V / R). Since the answer will be in watts, you'll need to either convert to milliwatts prior to converting to dBm, or add 30 dB to the result. Vrms = 2 / 2 / sqrt (2) = 0.7071 P = sqr (0.7071) / 50 = 0.01 W (0.01 * 1000 = 10 mW) 10*log (0.01) = -20 dBW + 30 dB = +10 dBm 10*log (0.01 * 1000) = +10 dBm

2

8. Which 2-port S-parameter is commonly referred to as "reverse isolation" in an amplifier? c) S12 Common names for each of the four 2-port S-parameters are: S11 : input return loss S21 : forward gain S12 : reverse isolation (or reverse gain) S22 : output return loss

9. What are the minimum and maximum combined VSWR limits at an interface characterized by a 1.25:1 VSWR and a 2.00:1 VSWR? b) 1.60:1 (min), 2.50:1 (max) When a signal interface is composed of two elements with differing complex impedances, part (maybe all) of the incident signal will be reflected. Since VSWR is a scalar value, the phase information of the reflection coefficient is lost in the conversion. Therefore a best case and a worst case total combined VSWR is calculated as follows: VSWR VSWR VSWR VSWR (max) = [ VSWR1 * VSWR2 ] : 1 (min) = [ VSWR1 / VSWR2 ] : 1, where VSWR1 > VSWR2. (max) = [2.00 * 1.25] : 1 = 2.50 : 1 (min) = [2.00 / 1.25] : 1 = 1.60 : 1

10. An ideal directional coupler has a directivity of 25 dB and an isolation of 40 dB. What is its coupling value? c) 15 dB A directional coupler is characterized by five main parameters as follows: 1. Frequency band of operation. 2. Power coupling expressed as dB down from the input power level.

3. Isolation of the coupled port from the output port (essentially coupling factor from the output port to the coupled port) 4. Directivity, which is mathematically the difference between the magnitudes of the isolation and the coupling. If the coupler in this case had 0 dBm signals applied to both the input and output ports, the coupled port would see -15 dBm from the input port and -40 dB from the output port, hence, an isolation of 25 dB. Coupling = 40 dB - 25 dB = 15 dB

1. What format would a near-filed communications (13 MHz variety) antenna most likely take? a) Inductive coil b) Capacitive plate c) Yagi d) Parabolic dish

2. What does SOLT stand for? a) Short Overload Test b) Simple OperationaL Test c) Short, Open, Load, Through d) Strategic Offensive Limitation Talks

3. Which instrument would be best to use to locate a defective waveguide joint? a) Microscope b) Micrometer c) Spectrum Analyzer d) Time Domain Reflectometer

4. Which entity in the U.S. determines whether an RF energy-emitting device is allowed to be operated? a) The Federal Communications Commission b) The Amateur Radio Relay League c) The Honor System d) The Underwriters Laboratory

5. What does 2G, 2.5G, 3G, etc., mean in reference to cellphones? a) The b) The c) It is d) The average cost of service, expressed in thousands of dollars ($ grand) per year generation of the technology an arbitrary alpha-numeric reference code frequency band of operation, in GHz

6. Where would you be likely to find a free wireless Internet connection? a) Hotel Lobby b) Airport c) Your backyard d) All the above

7. Who hosts the MTT-S International Microwave Symposium? a) Microwave Journal Magazine b) Microwaves & RF Magazine c) RF Design Magazine d) The Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers

8. What is the rule of thumb for estimating RF signal propagation distance vs. time in free space? a) 1 millimeter per millisecond b) 1 meter per microsecond c) 1 foot per nanosecond d) 1 inch per picosecond

9. What is the rule of thumb for estimating RF frequency vs. wavelength in free space? a) 300 MHz = 1 meter b) 100 MHz = 1 meter c) 300 MHz = 3 feet (1 yard) d) 100 MHz = 1 foot

10. What is the most unique feature of a Helmholtz coil? a) The high voltage makes for cool Jacobs Ladders b) Magnetic field lines are extremely uniform within the coil c) It is self-powered d) It uses a rare earth element core

Answers: 1. What format would a near-filed communications (13 MHz variety) antenna most likely take? a) Inductive coil. Most devices on the market today use an inductive coil to exploit the principle of magnetic induction whereby a current-carrying conductor in motion relative to another conductor induces a similar current.

2. What does SOLT stand for? c) Short, Open, Load, Through. In order to perform a full 2port calibration on a vector network analyzer (VNA), it is necessary to calibrate with both test cables using a certified set of adapters and terminations that meet industry specifications. The VNA then calculates the set of 12 error correction terms necessary to subtract out the effects of the system, including the test cables.

3. Which instrument would be best to use to locate a defective waveguide joint? d) Time Domain Reflectometer (TDR). The TDR sends a pulse of energy down the line and measures the length of time the reflected signal takes to return. A region of poor VSWR will reflect a portion of the signal energy that is dependent upon the degree of mismatch. If the entire length of waveguide and the termination are properly matched, there will be no returned (reflected) signal. Many network analyzers have this built-in capability.

4. Which entity in the U.S. determines whether an RF energy-emitting device is allowed to be operated? a) The Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Whether the radiation be intentional or unintentional, all products for commercial and private use must pass emissions testing as specified by the FCC.

5. What does 2G, 2.5G, 3G, etc., mean in reference to cellphones? b) The generation of the technology. 1G was the original analog phones. 2G introduced digital technology. 3G ushered in high bandwidth data along with voice, but it was late to arrive, so 2.5G filled the gap. 4G is now in the works.

6. Where would you be likely to find a free wireless Internet connection? d) All the above. "a" and '"b" are obvious. See my Kirt's Cogitation for "c."

7. Who hosts the MTT-S International Microwave Symposium? d) The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Since 1958, the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society (MTT-S), has put on the show.

8. What is the rule of thumb for estimating RF signal propagation distance vs. time in free space?

c) 1 foot per nanosecond. Electromagnetic energy travels about one foot in one nanosecond in free space (actually 1.01670336 ns), and in one nanosecond, it travels about one foot (actually 0.98357106 ft). The other three choices do not produce such close approximations (1 mm = ,3.3 ps, 1 m = 3.3 ns, 1 in = 85 ps).

9. What is the rule of thumb for estimating RF frequency vs. wavelength in free space?a) 300 MHz = 1 meter. More precisely, 300 MHz has a wavelength of 0.999308193 meters, but the error is about 0.07% - close enough. 100 MHz 3 m, 300 MHz 3.28 ft, 100 MHz 9.84 ft.

10. What is the most unique feature of a Helmholtz coil? b) Magnetic field lines are extremely uniform within the coil. This property makes the Helmholtz coil configuration very useful when testing magnetic properties since a device under test can be placed within the coil to free it from influences of outside magnetic field variations. If you chose A, you are thinking of a Tesla Coil.

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