Radio frequency (RF) is the oscillation rate of an alternating electric current or voltage or of a magnetic, electric or electromagnetic field in the frequency range from around 20 kHz to around 300 GHz. This is roughly between the upper limit of audio frequencies and the lower limit of infrared frequencies. These are the frequencies at which energy from an oscillating current can radiate off a conductor into space as radio waves.
RF and microwave measurement is critical in many industry sectors such as aerospace, automobile, electronics, manufacturing and healthcare, as it has great impact on quality of products and services; performance and reliability of equipment; health and safety of the people.
The RF and Microwave Laboratory has upgraded their primary power measurement system (i.e., microcalorimeter) with Type-N connection. Through this development, new capability for directly calibrating commercial reference standards (e.g., thermistor mounts) has been established. A trilateral comparison covering the operating frequency from 10 MHz to 18 GHz has been organized with other NMIs. This trilateral comparison was successfully completed in 2019 and validated the equivalence with excellent agreements of newly established Type-N microcalorimeter with other NMIs. The laboratory is also working on the development of high-frequency material measurement system for dielectric properties at metrology level.
The RF and Microwave Laboratory develops, maintains and disseminates the RF, microwave and millimeter-wave related national measurement standards in Singapore. NMC has set up and is continuing to improve national standards through R&D activities in this area to better meet the needs of the industry. Scope of Works: reference standards, measurement technologies, calibration services and collaboration projects in RF and microwave area.
NMC has developed a measurement system for RF-DC voltage difference calibration. The system transfers the parameter to cover the voltage range from 0.5 V to 10 V and frequency range from 100 kHz to 100 MHz. The uncertainties are less than 0.3%.
NMC has developed a series of power sensor calibration systems to provide the traceable calibration services with small measurement uncertainties.
Traceable scattering parameter measurements and calibration services are provided at NMC, and internationally recognized certificates are issued.
NMC has developed attenuation measurement standards using the audio frequency substitution method, and services are available for various frequencies up to 40 GHz.
NMC provides various traceable calibration and measurement services for electronics systems and instrument, such as oscilloscopes, distortion analysers, spectrum analysers, signal generators, and measuring receivers.
The RF and Microwave Laboratory also provides trainings for technical professionals and managers on current and emerging technologies for RF and microwave measurements and characterizations. These trainings also act as a platform to educate scientists and engineers working in the field on the fundamentals of RF and microwave metrology, and the importance of measurement comparability and traceability for international recognition of measurement and test results.
Trainings conducted in the past:
To ensure the unbroken metrological traceability chain, the RF and Microwave Laboratory participated in many international comparisons. NMC is currently the active member in the Consultative Committee for Electricity and Magnetism (CCEM), the active member in CCEM Working Group on Radiofrequency Quantities (CCEM GT-RF), and the active member in the Asia Pacific Metrology Programme (APMP) Technical Committee on Electricity and Magnetism (TCEM).
The RF and Microwave Laboratory also carries out R&D and consultancy for various industry and other stakeholders to develop and apply RF and microwave measurement techniques for various applications and offers them reliable solutions.
Some of the projects in the RF and Microwave Laboratory:
What is the ambient level of radiofrequency radiation in Singapore?The IMDA said the ambient level of radiofrequency radiation in Singapore is “very low”.It is “typically below 0.7 percent of … International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) guidelines”. Click here for more information.