Noise Figure Measurement Accuracy: The Y-Factor Method
Noise figure is a key performance parameter in many RF systems. The Y-factor method is the most common method to calculate the noise factor (F) of the DUT. A complete Y-factor noise figure measurement requires 2 steps (a) Calibration and (b) Measurement of the DUT. The Y-factor measurement involves the use of a noise source that has a pre-calibrated Excess Noise Ratio (ENR). Unfortunately, there is always a trade-off between speed and accuracy of noise figure measurements. To optimize the trade-off, it is necessary to eliminate all avoidable errors and to quantify the uncertainties that remain. This paper will walk you through how to improve noise figure measurement accuracy using the Y-Factor method by following a 3-stage process:
Avoid noise figure measurement mistakes
Minimize uncertainties wherever that is possible
Quantify the uncertainties that remain
You will also learn how to use software tools to calculate remaining uncertainties and practical techniques to reduce uncertainties. Lastly, this paper provides a checklist for improving noise figure measurement accuracy. Download and learn more.