Hardware Implementation Overhead of Switchable Matching Networks

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    Nowadays, more and more RF systems include switchable matching networks to decrease the impact of the environment-dependent antenna impedance on the RF front end performance. This paper reviews the theoretical lower limit on the required number of matching states to match VSWR ranges and then presents an analysis of hardware implementations to actually implement a suitable switchable matching network. A number of matching network topologies are analyzed: PI networks, loaded transmission lines, branch line coupler based circuits, single circulators and cascaded circulators. In our investigation only narrow-band applications are targeted. For the various circuit implementations the required number of matching states for each hardware implementation is compared to the theoretical minimum number of states required for the same matching in order to benchmark their hardware implementation overhead. It appears that a matching network using cascaded circulators is the closest to the theoretical optimum for networks with a relatively low number of states: this type of matching network was implemented and analyzed in more detail.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1152-1163
    Number of pages12
    JournalIEEE transactions on circuits and systems I: regular papers
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2017


    • EWI-27703


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