The Smith Chart

Presented by

Bill Williamson

About this talk

The Smith chart, invented by Phillip H. Smith (1905–1987), is a graphical designed for electrical and electronics engineers specializing in radio frequency (RF) engineering to assist in solving problems with transmission lines and matching circuits. An article appeared in the January, 1939 issue of Electronics that changed forever the way radio engineers think about transmission lines. Phil Smith devised an extraordinarily clever circular chart that revealed graphically the complex impedance anywhere along a line. This webinar is designed to introduce young RF engineers who may never have heard of the Smith chart to its immense power. We all use it unknowingly every day when because it is built in to so many systems that we do not even know it is there. The chart is simply the unit circle of the complex plane representing the generalized reflection coefficient. The contours representing constant real and imaginary line impedances are overlaid . Thus, the chart can be used to directly determine the normalized line impedance at any position of the transmission line as well as the reflection coefficient. The chart is also a unit’s converter. No mathematics are needed because all quantities are simply determined graphically. So ingenious was his invention that it has been the standard of the industry - for nearly sixty years. I am going to show you just how simple it is to design a balun to match a transmission line to an antenna. PLEASE NOTE: Please be sure to leave your correct email address when registering as you will be sent a copy of The Smith Chart for this exercise. You will also need a pencil, 12" ruler and compass/divider. I hope you enjoy the exercise.

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