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Transmission Line Basics II - Class 6

Michael Leddige
2

data
Dev a Dev b

Signal
Measured
Clk here Switch
Threshold

An engineer tells you the measured clock is non-

monotonic and because of this the flip flop internally
may double clock the data. The goal for this class is
to by inspection determine the cause and suggest
whether this is a problem or not.
Transmission Lines Class 6
3

Agenda
 The Transmission Line Concept
 Transmission line equivalent circuits
and relevant equations
 Reflection diagram & equation
 Termination methods and comparison
 Propagation delay
 Simple return path ( circuit theory,
network theory come later)
Transmission Lines Class 6
4

Two Transmission Line Viewpoints

 Steady state ( most historical view)
Frequency domain
 Transient
Time domain
Not circuit element Why?
 We mix metaphors all the time
Why convenience and history

5

Transmission Line Concept

Power Frequency (f) is @ 60 Hz Power
Wavelength (λ ) is 5× 10 m6
Plant
( Over 3,100 Miles)

Consumer
Home

Transmission Lines Class 6

PC Transmission Lines
6

Signal Frequency (f) is

approaching 10 GHz Integrated Circuit
Stripline
Wavelength (λ ) is 1.5 cm
( 0.6 inches) Microstrip T

PCB substrate
Cross section view taken here
Stripline
W
Via
Micro
FR4 Dielectric
Copper Trace
Cross Section of Above PCB
-
Strip
Signal (microstrip)

Ground/Power
T Copper Plane Signal (stripline)
Signal (stripline)
Ground/Power
Signal (microstrip)

W
Transmission Lines Class 6
7

Key point about transmission line operation

Voltage and current on a transmission line is
a function of both time and position.
I2

V = f ( z, t )
I1

I = f ( z, t )
V1 V2

dz
The major deviation from circuit theory with
transmission line, distributed networks is this
positional dependence of voltage and current!
Must think in terms of position and time to
understand transmission line behavior
This positional dependence is added when
the assumption of the size of the circuit being
small compared to the signaling wavelength
Transmission Lines Class 6
8

Examples of Transmission Line

Structures- I
 Cables and wires
(a) Coax cable
(b) Wire over ground
(d) Twisted pair (two-wire line)
 Long distance interconnects
+

+ -
(a) (b)
-

- + - + -
(c) (d)
Transmission Lines Class 6
9

Segment 2: Transmission line equivalent

circuits and relevant equations

 Physics of transmission line structures

 Basic transmission line equivalent circuit
 ?Equations for transmission line propagation

10

X

Electric field

an applied forcing function.

(Source) Ground return path

The signal is really the wave

propagating between the
conductors
Transmission Lines Class 6
Transmission Line “Definition”
11

 General transmission line: a closed system in which

power is transmitted from a source to a destination

 Our class: only TEM mode transmission lines

A two conductor wire system with the wires in close
proximity, providing relative impedance, velocity and
closed current return path to the source.
Characteristic impedance is the ratio of the voltage and
current waves at any one position on the transmission
line V
Z0 =
I
Propagation velocity is the speed with which signals are
transmitted through the transmission line in its
surrounding medium. c
v=
εr
Transmission Lines Class 6
12

Presence of Electric and Magnetic Fields

H
I I + ∆I I I + ∆I
+ + + +

E
V V + ∆V V V + ∆V
H
I I + ∆I I I + ∆I
- - - -

 Both Electric and Magnetic fields are present in the

transmission lines
These fields are perpendicular to each other and to the direction of wave
propagation for TEM mode waves, which is the simplest mode, and
assumed for most simulators(except for microstrip lines which assume
“quasi-TEM”, which is an approximated equivalent for transient response
calculations).
 Electric field is established by a potential difference
between two conductors.
Implies equivalent circuit model must contain capacitor.
 Magnetic field induced by current flowing on the line
Implies equivalent circuit model must contain inductor.
Transmission Lines Class 6
13

T-Line Equivalent Circuit

 General Characteristics of Transmission
Line
Propagation delay per unit length (T0) { time/distance} [ps/in]
Or Velocity (v0) {distance/ time} [in/ps]
Characteristic Impedance (Z0)
Per-unit-length Capacitance (C0) [pf/in]
Per-unit-length Inductance (L0) [nf/in]
Per-unit-length (Series) Resistance (R0) [Ω/in]
Per-unit-length (Parallel) Conductance (G0) [S/in]

lR0 lL0
lG0 lC0

Transmission Lines Class 6

14

Ideal T Line
 Ideal (lossless) Characteristics of
Transmission Line lL0
Ideal TL assumes:
Uniform line lC0
Perfect (lossless) conductor (R0→ 0)
Perfect (lossless) dielectric (G0→ 0)
We only consider T0, Z0 , C0, and L0.
 A transmission line can be represented by a
cascaded network (subsections) of these
equivalent models.
The smaller the subsection the more accurate the model
The delay for each subsection should be
no larger than 1/10th the signal rise time.
Transmission Lines Class 6
Signal Frequency and Edge Rate
15

vs.
Lumped or Tline Models
In theory, all circuits that deliver transient power from
one point to another are transmission lines, but if the
signal frequency(s) is low compared to the size of the
circuit (small), a reasonable approximation can be
used to simplify the circuit for calculation of the circuit
transient (time vs. voltage or time vs. current)
response.

16

T Line Rules of Thumb

So, what are the rules of thumb to use?

May treat as lumped Capacitance

Use this 10:1 ratio for accurate
modeling of transmission lines

Td < .1 Tx

May treat as RC on-chip, and treat as

LC for PC board interconnect

Td < .4 Tx
Transmission Lines Class 6
Other “Rules of Thumb”
17

 Frequency knee (Fknee) = 0.35/Tr (so if Tr is

1nS, Fknee is 350MHz)
 This is the frequency at which most energy is
below
 Tr is the 10-90% edge rate of the signal
 Assignment: At what frequency can your thumb be
used to determine which elements are lumped?
Assume 150 ps/in

Transmission Lines Class 6

When does a T-line become a T-Line?
18

 Whether it is a
bump or a
mountain depends
on the ratio of its
When do we need to size (tline) to the
use transmission line size of the vehicle
analysis techniques vs. (signal
lumped circuit wavelength)
analysis?
 Similarly, whether
or not a line is to
be considered as a
transmission line
depends on the
ratio of length of
the line (delay) to
the wavelength of
Wavelength/edge rate Tline the applied
frequency or the
rise/fall edge of the
Transmission Lines Class 6 signal
Equations & Formulas

How to model & explain

transmission line behavior
20

Relevant Transmission Line Equations

Propagation equation
γ = ( R + jωL)(G + jωC ) = α + jβ
α is the attenuation (loss) factor
β is the phase (velocity) factor
Characteristic Impedance equation
( R + j ωL )
Z0 =
(G + jωC )
In class problem: Derive the high frequency, lossless
approximation for Z0
Transmission Lines Class 6
21

Ideal Transmission Line Parameters

 Knowing any two out of Z0,
Td, C0, and L0, the other two
L0
can be calculated. Z0 = ; T d = L0 C0 ;
 C0 and L0 are reciprocal C0
functions of the line cross- T0
sectional dimensions and C0 = ; L0 = Z 0 T 0 ;
Z0
are related by constant me.
1
 ε is electric permittivity v0 = ; C0 L0 = µε;
ε 0= 8.85 X 10-12 F/m (free space) µε
ε ri s relative dielectric constant
µ = µr µ0 ; ε = εr ε0 .
 µ is magnetic permeability
µ 0= 4p X 10-7 H/m (free space)
µ r is relative permeability

Transmission Lines Class 6

Parallel Plate Approximation
22

 Assumptions TC

TEM conditions ε TD

Uniform dielectric (ε )
between conductors WC
TC<< TD; WC>> TD
ε * PlateArea Base
 T-line characteristics are C=
function of: d equation
Material electric and WC  F  WC  pF 
magnetic properties C0 ε⋅ ⋅  8.85 ⋅ε r ⋅ ⋅ 
TD  m  TD  m 
Dielectric Thickness (TD)
TD  F  T D  µH 
Width of conductor (WC)
L0 µ⋅ ⋅  0.4 ⋅π ⋅µ r ⋅ ⋅ 
 Trade-off WC  m  WC  m 
TD ; C0 , L0 , Z0  TD µr
Z0 377 ⋅ ⋅ ⋅Ω
WC ; C0 , L0 , Z0  WC εr

To a first order, t-line capacitance and inductance can

be approximated using the parallel plate approximation.
Transmission Lines Class 6
23

Improved Microstrip Formula

 Parallel Plate Assumptions +
WC
Large ground plane with
TC
zero thickness
ε TD
 To accurately predict
microstrip impedance, you
must calculate the effective
dielectric constant. From Hall, Hall & McCall:
87  5.98TD 
Z0 ≈ ln  Valid when:
εr + 1.41  0.8WC + TC  0.1 < WC/TD < 2.0 and 1 < r < 15

εr + 1 εr − 1 TC
εe = + + F − 0.217( εr − 1)
2 12TD WCTD
2 1+
WC
2 You can’t
 WC 
0.02(εr −1)1 −
WC

T
 for
TD
<1
beat a field
F=  D 
0 for
WC
>1 solver
TD

24

Improved Stripline Formulas

 Same assumptions as WC TD1
used for microstrip ε
TC

From Hall, Hall & McCall:

Symmetric (balanced) Stripline Case TD1 = TD2

60  4(TD1 + TD1) 
Z 0 sym ≈ ln 

εr  0. 67π ( 0.8WC + T C ) 
Valid when WC/(TD1+TD2) < 0.35 and TC/(TD1+TD2) < 0.25
You can’t
Offset (unbalanced) Stripline Case TD1 > TD2 beat a field
solver
Z 0 sym(2 A, WC , TC , εr ) ⋅ Z 0 sym(2 B, WC , TC , εr )
Z 0offset ≈ 2
Z 0 sym(2 A,WC , TC , εr ) + Z 0 sym(2 B,WC , TC , εr )

Transmission Lines Class 6

25

Refection coefficient
 Signal on a transmission line can be analyzed by
keeping track of and adding reflections and
transmissions from the “bumps” (discontinuities)
 Refection coefficient
Amount of signal reflected from the “bump”
Frequency domain ρ=sign(S11)*|S11|
If at load or source the reflection may be called gamma (ΓL
or Γs)
Time domain ρ is only defined a location
The “bump”
Time domain analysis is causal.
Frequency domain is for all time.
We use similar terms – be careful
 Reflection diagrams – more later

Transmission Lines Class 6

Reflection and Transmission
26

Incident 1+ρ Transmitted

ρ Reflecte
d
Reflection Coeficient Transmission Coeffiecent
Zt − Z0
ρ
Zt − Z0 τ (1 + ρ) "" → "" τ 1+
Zt + Z0
Zt + Z0
2⋅ Zt
τ
Zt + Z0

27

Special Cases to Remember

A: Terminated in Zo
Zs −
Zo Zo ρ = Zo Zo = 0
Vs Zo + Zo

B: Short Circuit
Zs −
Zo ρ = 0 Zo = −1
Vs 0 + Zo

C: Open Circuit
Zs ∞ − Zo
Zo ρ= =1
Vs ∞ + Zo

28

Assignment – Building the SI Tool Box

Compare the parallel plate
approximation to the improved
microstrip and stripline formulas
for the following cases:
Microstrip:
WC = 6 mils, TD = 4 mils, TC = 1 mil, εr = 4
Symmetric Stripline:
WC = 6 mils, TD1 = TD2 = 4 mils, TC = 1 mil, εr = 4
Write Math Cad Program to calculate Z0, Td, L
& C for each case.
What factors cause the errors with the parallel
plate approximation?
Transmission Lines Class 6
29

Transmission line equivalent circuits and

relevant equations

 Basic pulse launching onto transmission lines

 Calculation of near and far end waveforms for

Transmission Lines Class 6

Review: Voltage Divider Circuit
30

 Consider the
simple circuit that RS
contains source
voltage VS, source RL
VS VL
resistance RS, and
 The output
voltage, VL is
RL
easily calculated VL = VS
from the source RL + R S
amplitude and the
values of the two
series resistors.
Why do we care for?
Next page….
Transmission Lines Class 6
31

Solving Transmission Line Problems

The next slides will establish a procedure that
will allow you to solve transmission line
problems without the aid of a simulator. Here
are the steps that will be presented:
 Determination of launch voltage &
final “DC” or “t =0” voltage
 Calculation of load reflection coefficient and
voltage delivered to the load
 Calculation of source reflection coefficient
and resultant source voltage
These are the steps for solving
all t-line problems.
Transmission Lines Class 6
Determining Launch Voltage
32

TD
Rs A B
Vs
Zo
0 Vs Rt

(initial voltage)
t=0, V=Vi

Z0 Rt
Vi = VS Vf = VS
Z 0 + RS Rt + RS

Step 1 in calculating transmission line waveforms

is to determine the launch voltage in the circuit.
 The behavior of transmission lines makes it
easy to calculate the launch & final voltages –
it is simply a voltage divider!
Transmission Lines Class 6
33

Voltage Delivered to the Load

TD
Vs Rs A B
Vs Zo Rt
0

(initial voltage)
t=0, V=Vi

(signal is reflected)
t=2TD,
V=Vi − +Zo
Rt+ ρB(Vi) ρA(ρB)(Vi ) t=TD, V=Vi +ρB(Vi )
Vreflected = ρ Β (Vincident)
ρΒ =
Rt + Zo VB = Vincident + Vreflected
Step 2: Determine VB in the circuit at time t = TD
 The transient behavior of transmission line delays the
arrival of launched voltage until time t = TD.
 VB at time 0 < t < TD is at quiescent voltage (0 in this case)
 Voltage wavefront will be reflected at the end of the t-line
 VB = Vincident + Vreflected at time t = TD
Transmission Lines Class 6
34

Voltage Reflected Back to the Source

Rs A B
Vs
Zo
0 Vs ρA ρB Rt

TD
(initial voltage)
t=0, V=Vi

(signal is reflected)
t=2TD,
V=Vi + ρB (Vi) + ρA(ρ B )(Vi ) t=TD, V=Vi + ρB (Vi )

Transmission Lines Class 6

Voltage Reflected Back to the Source 35

− Zo Vreflected = ρ Α (Vincident)
ρ Α = Rs
Rs + Zo VA = Vlaunch + Vincident + Vreflected

Step 3: Determine VA in the circuit at time t = 2TD

 The transient behavior of transmission line delays the
arrival of voltage reflected from the load until time t =
2TD.
 VA at time 0 < t < 2TD is at launch voltage
 Voltage wavefront will be reflected at the source
 VA = Vlaunch + Vincident + Vreflected at time t = 2TD

In the steady state, the solution converges to

VB = VS[Rt / (Rt + Rs)]

36

 Consider the circuit

shown to the right
with a resistive load,
assume propagation RS I1 I2
Z0 ,Τ 0

delay = T, RS= Z0 . VS V1
l
V2 RL

Calculate and show

the wave forms of
V1(t),I1(t),V2(t),
and I2(t) for (a) RL=
∞ and (b) RL= 3Z0

37

Step-Function into T-Line: Relationships

 Source matched case: RS= Z0
V1(0) = 0.5VA, I1(0) = 0.5IA
Γ S = 0, V(x,∞ ) = 0.5VA(1+ Γ L)
 Uncharged line
V2(0) = 0, I2(0) = 0
 Open circuit means RL= ∞
Γ L = ∞ /∞ = 1
V1(∞) = V2(∞) = 0.5VA(1+1) = VA
I1(∞) = I2 (∞) = 0.5IA(1-1) = 0
Solution
Transmission Lines Class 6
38

Step-Function into T-Line with Open Ckt

 At t = T, the voltage wave reaches load end
and doubled wave travels back to source end
V1(T) = 0.5VA, I1(T) = 0.5VA/Z0
V2(T) = VA, I2 (T) = 0
 At t = 2T, the doubled wave reaches the
source end and is not reflected
V1(2T) = VA, I1(2T) = 0
V2(2T) = VA, I2(2T) = 0

Solution
Transmission Lines Class 6
39

Waveshape:
Step-Function into T-Line with Open Ckt
I1
IA
I2
RS I1 I2
Current (A)

0.75IA Z0 ,Τ 0

l
0.5I A VS V1 V2 Open

0.25IA

0 Τ 2Τ 3Τ 4Τ Time (ns)

VA
V1 This is called
V2 “reflected wave
Voltage (V)

0.75VA
switching”
0.5VA

0.25VA

Solution
0 Τ 2Τ 3Τ 4Τ Time (ns)
Transmission Lines Class 6
40

Problem 1b: Relationships

 Source matched case: RS= Z0
V1(0) = 0.5VA, I1(0) = 0.5IA
Γ S = 0, V(x,∞ ) = 0.5VA(1+ Γ L)
 Uncharged line
V2(0) = 0, I2(0) = 0
 RL= 3Z0
Γ L = (3Z0 -Z0) / (3Z0 +Z0) = 0.5
V1(∞) = V2(∞) = 0.5VA(1+0.5) = 0.75VA
I1(∞) = I2(∞) = 0.5IA(1-0.5) = 0.25IA
Solution
Transmission Lines Class 6
41

Problem 1b: Solution

 At t = T, the voltage wave reaches load end
and positive wave travels back to the source
V1(T) = 0.5VA, I1(T) = 0.5IA
V2(T) = 0.75VA , I2(T) = 0.25IA
 At t = 2T, the reflected wave reaches the
source end and absorbed
V1(2T) = 0.75VA , I1(2T) = 0.25IA
V2(2T) = 0.75VA , I2(2T) = 0.25IA

Solution
Transmission Lines Class 6
Waveshapes for Problem 1b
42

I1
IA
I2 I1 I2
RS
0.75IA Z0 ,Τ 0
Current (A)

l
0.5IA VS V1 V2 RL

0.25IA

0 Τ 2Τ 3Τ 4Τ Time (ns)

I1
VA
I2
Note that a
0.75VA properly
Voltage (V)

0.5VA
terminated wave
settle out at 0.5
0.25VA
SolutionV
0 Τ 2Τ 3Τ 4Τ Time (ns)
Solution
Transmission Lines Class 6
Transmission line step response
43

 Introduction to lattice diagram analysis

 Calculation of near and far end waveforms for
 Solving multiple reflection problems

Complex signal reflections at different types of

transmission line “discontinuities” will be analyzed
in this chapter. Lattice diagrams will be introduced
as a solution tool.

44

Lattice Diagram Analysis – Key Concepts

Vs Rs
The lattice diagram is a 0 TD = N ps
Vs Rt
tool/technique to simplify
the accounting of ρsource ρload
reflections and waveforms V(load)
Time V(source)
 Diagram shows the boundaries 0 a
(x =0 and x=l) and the reflection A’
coefficients (GL and GL )
N ps A
 Time (in T) axis shown b
vertically
 Slope of the line should 2N ps
c
B’
indicate flight time of signal
Particularly important for multiple
reflection problems using both 3N ps B
microstrip and stripline mediums. d
 Calculate voltage amplitude for C’
each successive reflected wave 4N ps
e
 Total voltage at any point is the
sum of all the waves that have 5N ps
reached that point

Transmission Lines Class 6

Lattice Diagram Analysis – Detail 45

ρ ρ

0 Vlaunch
0

Time Vlaunch N ps

2N ps

4N ps
Vs Rs 5N ps
0 Vs TD = N ps
Rt

Transmission Lines Class 6

Transient Analysis – Over Damped 46

V(source) Zo V(load) Assume Zs=75 ohms

2v Zs Zo=50ohms
0 TD = 250 ps Vs=0-2 volts
Vs
Zo  50 
Vinitial = Vs = (2)  = 0.8
ρ source = 0.2 ρ load = 1 Zs + Zo  75 + 50 
Time V(source) V(load) Zs − Zo 75 − 50
0
ρ source = = = 0.2
0.8v Zs + Zo 75 + 50
0v
Zl − Zo ∞ − 50
500 ps 0.8v
ρ load = = =1
Zl + Zo ∞ + 50
0.8v

1000 ps 1.6v Response fr om lattice diagram

0.16v
2.5
1500 ps 1.76v 2
0.16v
1.5
V olt s
1.92v 1 Sour ce
2000 ps
0.032v 0.5

0
2500 ps 0 2 50 500 750 1000 1250

Tim e , ps

Transmission Lines Class 6

Transient Analysis – Under Damped 47

V(source) Zo V(load) Assume Zs=25 ohms

2v Zs Zo =50ohms
0 Vs TD = 250 ps Vs=0-2 volts

Zo  50 
Vinitial =Vs = (2)   =1.3333
ρsource = −0 . 3333 ρload = 1 +
Zs Zo +
 25 50 
Zs − Zo 25 −50
0 ρsource = = = −0.33333
1.33v +
Zs Zo 25 50+
0v
Zl − Zo ∞ −50
500 ps 1.33v ρload = = =1
1.33v +
Zl Zo ∞ + 50

1000 ps 2.66v Response from lattice diagram

-0.443v

3
1500 ps 2.22v
-0.443v 2.5
2
Volts
1.77v 1.5
2000 ps
0.148v 1 Source
2500 ps 1.92 0
0.148v 0 250 500 750 1000 1250 1500 1750 2000 2250

Time, ps
2.07

Transmission Lines Class 6

Two Segment Transmission Line Structures
48

X X
Rs
Zo1 Zo2 Rt
Vs
TD TD A= a A' = b + e
T3 T2 B = a+c+d B' = b + e + g + i
ρ1 ρ 2 ρ3 ρ4 C = A+ c+ d + f + h C' = b + e + g + i + k + l
a a = vi
Z o1
vi = Vs
TD A c b Rs + Z o1 b = aT2

2TD Rs − Z o1 c = aρ 2
d e ρ1 =
Rs + Z o1
3TD B g
A’ d = cρ 1
f
Z o 2 − Z o1
4TD
ρ2 = e = bρ 4
h i Z o 2 + Z o1
B’ f = dρ 2 + eT3
5TD C j k Z − Zo2
ρ 3 = o1 g = eρ 3 + dT2
Z o1 + Z o 2
l
Rt − Z o 2 h = fρ 1
C’ ρ4 =
Rt + Z o 2 i = gρ 4

T2 = 1 + ρ 2 j = hρ 2 + iT3

T3 = 1 + ρ 3 k = iρ 3 + hT2
Transmission Lines Class 6
49

Assignment Previous examples are

the preparation
 Consider the two segment
transmission line shown to
the right. Assume RS= 3Z01
and Z02= 3Z01 . Use Lattice R I I I 3
S 1 2

diagram and calculate Z ,Τ Z ,Τ 01 01 02 02

l l
reflection coefficients at
1 2
V V V 1 V 3 Short
S 2

the interfaces and show

the wave forms of V1(t),
V2(t), and V3(t).
 Check results with PSPICE