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A noise source module for In-Situ noise figure measurements from DC to 50 GHz at cryogenic temperatures

: Bruch, Daniel; Amils, R.I.; Gallego, J.D.; Seelmann-Eggebert, M.; Aja, B.; Schäfer, F.; Diez, C.; Leuther, A.; Schlechtweg, M.; Ambacher, O.; Kallfass, I.


IEEE microwave and wireless components letters 22 (2012), Nr.12, S.657-659
ISSN: 1051-8207
ISSN: 1531-1309
Fraunhofer IAF ()
low-noise amplifier (LNA)

This letter presents the design and performance of a noise source module for in-situ noise temperature measurements at cryogenic temperatures. The noise source module operates from DC up to 50 GHz and is suitable for measurements of noise temperatures as low as a few Kelvin, achieving a measurement accuracy of about +-1,2 K. The GaAs MMIC used in the module includes a well matched 50 (omega) termination with better than 20 dB return loss, a heating element and an on-chip temperature sensor, hence the noise source module can directly be connected to the device under test (DUT) with no additional elements or transitions needed. The measurement can then be taken with standard noise measurement equipment. Noise temperatures as low as 13 K have been measured in Ka-band with this device. Due to the ease of use, the good matching, the extraordinary bandwidth and the less involved calibration technique, the noise sourcemodule outperforms the conventional measurement setup using a noise diode in conjunction with a cooled attenuator.