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TDR impedance measurements: A foundation for signal integrity

Posted: 25 Jun 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:signal integrity? TDR impedance measurements? oscilloscope?

Signal integrity is a growing priority as digital system designers pursue ever-higher clock and data rates in computer, communications, video and network systems. At today�s high operating frequencies, anything that affects a signal�s rise time, pulse width, timing, jitter or noise content can impact reliability at the system level. To ensure signal integrity, it is necessary to understand and control impedance in the transmission environment through which the signals travel. Mismatches and variations can cause reflections that decrease signal quality as a whole.

In this Tektronix application note, the methodology of choice for measuring impedances is Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR), carried out using high-performance instruments such as the TDS8000 oscilloscope equipped with the 80E04 TDR sampling module. TDR permits the signal transmission environment to be analyzed in the time domain just as the signal integrity of data signals is analyzed in time domain.

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