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ENE 428
Microwave
Engineering
Lecture 12 Power Dividers and
Directional Couplers
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Power dividers and directional couplers
Passive components that are used for power division or
combining.

The coupler may be a three-port or a four-port component

Three-port networks take the form of T-junctions

Four-port networks take the form of directional couplers
and hybrids.

Hybrid junctions have equal power division and either 90
or a 180 phase shift between the outport ports.
3 3
Types of power dividers and directional
couplers
T-junction power divider

Resistive divider

Wilkinson power divider

Bethe Hole Coupler

Quadrature (90) hybrid and magic-T (180) hybrid

Coupled line directional coupler
4 4
Basic properties of dividers and couplers
The simplest type is a T-junction or a three-port network
with two inputs and one output.

The scattering matrix of an arbitrary three-port network
has nine independent elements
| |
11 12 13
21 22 23
31 32 33
S S S
S S S S
S S S
(
(
=
(
(

Divider
or
coupler
P
1
P
2
=oP
1
P
3
=(1o)P
1
Divider
or
coupler
P
1
=P
2
+P
3
P
2
P
3
5 5
The scattering parameters lossless
property
The unitary matrix:


This can be written in summation form as



where o
ij
= 1 if i = j and o
ij
= 0 if i = j thus
if i = j,



while if i = j ,
| | | |
{ }
1
t
S S

-
=
1
, ,
N
ki kj ij
k
S S for all i j
-
=
=

o
1
1,
N
ki ki
k
S S
-
=
=

1
0.
N
ki kj
k
S S
-
=
=

6 6
It is impossible to construct a three-port
lossless reciprocal network. (1)
If all ports are matched, then S
ii
= 0, and if the network is
reciprocal the scattering matrix reduces to





If the network is lossless, the scattering matrix must be
unitary that leads to
| |
12 13
12 23
13 23
0
0 .
0
S S
S S S
S S
(
(
=
(
(

7 7
It is impossible to construct a three-port
lossless reciprocal network. (2)
Two of the three parameters (S
12
, S
13
, S
23
) must be zeros
but this will be inconsistent with one of eq. (1a-c), implying
that a three-port network cannot be lossless, reciprocal, and
matched at all ports.

2 2
12 13
2 2
12 23
2 2
13 23
13 23
23 12
12 13
1, (1 )
1, (1 )
1, (1 )
0, (1 )
0, (1 )
0. (1 )
S S a
S S b
S S c
S S d
S S e
S S f
-
-
-
+ =
+ =
+ =
=
=
=
8 8
Any matched lossless three-port network
must be nonreciprocal. (1)
The [S] matrix of a matched three-port network has the
following form:






If the network is lossless, [S] must be unitary, which
implies the following:

| |
12 13
21 23
31 32
0
0 .
0
S S
S S S
S S
(
(
=
(
(

9 9
Any matched lossless three-port network
must be nonreciprocal. (2)
Either of these followings can satisfy above equations,


or

2 2
12 13
2 2
21 23
2 2
31 32
31 32
21 23
12 13
1, (2 )
1, (2 )
1, (2 )
0, (2 )
0, (2 )
0. (2 )
S S a
S S b
S S c
S S d
S S e
S S f
-
-
-
+ =
+ =
+ =
=
=
=
12 23 31 21 32 13
21 32 13 12 23 31
0, 1, (3 )
0, 1. (3 )
S S S S S S a
S S S S S S b
= = = = = =
= = = = = =
10 10
Any matched lossless three-port network
must be nonreciprocal. (3)
This results show that S
ij
= S
ji
for i = j, therefore the device
must be nonreciprocal.

These S matrices represent two possible types of
circulators, forward and backward.

11 11
A lossless and reciprocal three-port network
can be physically realized if only two of its
ports are matched. (1)
If ports 1 and 2 are matched ports, then





To be lossless, the following unitary conditions must be
satisfied:

| |
12 13
12 23
13 23 33
0
0 .
S S
S S S
S S S
(
(
=
(
(

12 12
A lossless and reciprocal three-port network
can be physically realized if only two of its
ports are matched. (2)
From (3a-b), , so (3d) shows that S
13
= S
23
= 0.
Then |S
12
|=|S
33
|=1.

2 2
12 13
2 2
12 23
2 2 2
13 23 33
13 23
12 13 23 33
23 12 33 13
1, (3 )
1, (3 )
1, (3 )
0, (3 )
0, (3 )
0. (3 )
S S a
S S b
S S S c
S S d
S S S S e
S S S S f
-
- -
- -
+ =
+ =
+ + =
=
+ =
+ =
13 23
S S =
13 13
A lossless and reciprocal three-port network
can be physically realized if only two of its
ports are matched. (3)
The scattering matrix and signal flow graph are shown
below.








If a three-port network is lossy, it can be reciprocal and
matched at all ports.
2 1
3
S
21
=e
ju
S
12
=e
ju
S
33
=e
j|
14 14
Four-port networks (Directional Couplers)
Power supplied to port 1 is coupled to port 3 (the coupled
port), while the remainder of the input power is delivered to
port 2 (the through port)

In an ideal directional coupler, no power is delivered to
port 4 (the isolated port).
1 2
3 4
Input Through
Coupled Isolated
1 2
3 4
Input Through
Coupled Isolated
15 15
Basic properties of directional couplers are
described by four-port networks.(1)
| |
12 13 14
12 23 24
13 23 34
14 24 34
0
0
.
0
0
S S S
S S S
S
S S S
S S S
(
(
(
=
(
(

The [ S ] matrix of a reciprocal four-port network matched
at all ports has the above form.

If the network is lossless, there will be 10 equations result
from the unitary condition.
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Conditions needed for a lossless reciprocal
four-port network (1)
The multiplication of row 1 and row 2, and the
multiplication of row 4 and row 3 can be arranged so that

(4)

The multiplication of row 1 and row 3, and the
multiplication of row 2 and row 4 can be arranged so that

(5)

If S
14
= S
23
= 0, a directional coupler can be obtained.

2 2
14 13 24
( ) 0. S S S
-
=
2 2
23 12 34
( ) 0. S S S =
17 17
Conditions needed for a lossless reciprocal
four-port network (2)
Then the self-products of the rows of the unitary [S] matrix
yield the following equations:








which imply that |S
13
|=|S
24
|and that |S
12
|=|S
24
|.
2 2
12 13
2 2
12 24
2 2
13 34
2 2
24 34
1, (6 )
1, (6 )
1, (6 )
1, (6 )
S S a
S S b
S S c
S S d
+ =
+ =
+ =
+ =
18 18
Symmetrical and Antisymmetrical coupler (1)
The phase references of three of the four ports are chosen
as S
12
= S
34
= o, S
13
= |e
ju
, and S
24
= |e
j|
, where o and |
are real, and u and | are phase constants to be determined.

The dot products or rows 2 and 3 gives



which yields a relation between the remaining phase
constant as
u + | =t 2nt.
12 13 24 34
0 S S S S
- -
+ =
19 19
Symmetrical and Antisymmetrical coupler (2)
If 2t is ignored, we yield

1. The symmetrical coupler: u = | = t/2.





2. The antisymmetrical coupler: u = 0, | = t.






| |
0 0
0 0
.
0 0
0 0
j
j
S
j
j
o |
o |
| o
| o
(
(
(
=
(
(

| |
0 0
0 0
.
0 0
0 0
S
o |
o |
| o
| o
(
(

(
=
(
(


20 20
Symmetrical and Antisymmetrical coupler (3)
The two couplers differ only in the choice of the reference
planes. The amplitudes o and | are not independent, eq
(6a) requires that
o
2
+ |
2
=1.

Another way for eq. (4) and (5) to be satisfied is if
|S
13
|=|S
24
| and |S
12
|=|S
34
|.

If phase references are chosen such that S
13
=S
24
=o and
S
12
=S
34
=j|, two possible solutions are given. First
S
14
=S
23
=0, same as above.

The other solution is for o = | =0, which implies
S
12
=S
13
=S
24
=S
34
=0, the case of two decoupled two-port
network.
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Power supplied to port 1 is coupled to port 3 (the coupled
port) with the coupling factor

The remainder of the input power is delivered to port 2 (the
through port) with the coefficient

In an ideal coupler, no power is delivered to port 4 (the
isolated port).

Hybrid couplers have the coupling factor of 3 dB or o = |
= The quadrature hybrid coupler has a 90 phase shift
between ports 2 and 3 (u = | = t/2) when fed at port 1.
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Directional couplers characterization (1)
2
2
13
. S = |
2
2 2
12
1 . S = = o |
1/ 2.
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Coupling = C = = -20log| dB,

Directivity = D = = 20log dB,

Isolation = I = = -20log|S
14
| dB.

The coupling factor indicates the fraction of the input
power coupled to the output port.

The directivity is a measure of the couplers ability to
isolate forward and backward waves, as is the isolation.
These quantities can be related as

I = D + C dB.
22
Directional couplers characterization (2)
1
3
10log
P
P
3
4
10log
P
P
1
4
10log
P
P
14
S
|
23
The ideal coupler would have infinite directivity and
isolation (S
14
= 0).
23
Ideal coupler
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The T-junction power divider
The T-junction power divider can be implemented in any
type of transmission line medium.


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Lossless divider (1)
A lumped susceptance, B, accounts for the stored
energy resulted from fringing fields and higher order
modes associated with the discontinuity at the junction.

In order for the divider to be matched to the input line
impedance Z
0
, and assume a TL to be lossless, we will
have

1 2 0
1 1 1
.
in
Y
Z Z Z
= + =
jB
Z
1
Z
2
Z
0
+
V
0
-
Y
in
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Lossless divider (2)
The output line impedances Z
1
and Z
2
can then be
selected to provide various power division ratios.

In order for the divider to be matched to the input line
impedance Z
0
, and assume a TL to be lossless, we will
have

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Ex1 A lossless T-junction power divider has a
source impedance of 50 O. Find the output
characteristic impedances so that the input power
is divided in a 3:1 ratio. Compute the reflection
coefficients seen looking into the output ports.
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Resistive divider
A lossy three-port divider can be made to matched at all
ports, although the two output ports may not be isolated.
Z
0
/3
Z
0
Z
0
+
V
-
Z
in
Z
Z
0
+
V
2
-
+
V
3
-
Z
0
/3
Z
0
/3
+
V
1
-
P
1
Port 1
Port 2
P
2
P
3
Port 3
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The Wilkinson power divider
The lossless T-junction divider cannot be matched at all
ports and does not have any isolation between output
ports.

The resistive divider can be matched at all ports but the
isolation is still not achieved.

The Wilkinson power divider can be matched at all ports
and isolation can be achieved between the output ports.