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Robert Lacoste's The Darker Side by Robert Lacoste

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Chapter 3 Time Domain Reflectometry

Note: This chapter is a reprint of the article “The darker side: Time domain reflectometry,” Circuit Cellar, no. 225, April 2009.

In the previous chapters I talked a lot about impedance matching. In this chapter I will present the same subject from another angle: time domain. You may have read sentences such as “When matching is not perfect, a part of the signal is reflected back to the source.” This may seem strange for engineers who are not used to high-frequency effects. Imagine the worst case of an impedance mismatch: a wire grounded at one of its ends. Do you think there could be any signal, reflected or not, in such a wire? Of course, and I will show it to you!

In the previous chapters I talked a lot ...

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