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Rev Sci Instrum. 2011 Jul;82(7):074704. doi: 10.1063/1.3607432.

Hyperbolic-cosine waveguide tapers and oversize rectangular waveguide for reduced broadband insertion loss in W-band electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy.

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Department of Biophysics, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53226-0509, USA.


The two-way insertion loss of a 1 m length of waveguide was reduced by nearly 5 dB over a 4% bandwidth at W-band (94 GHz) for an electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectrometer relative to WR10 waveguide. The waveguide has an oversize section of commercially available rectangular WR28 and a novel pair of tapers that vary in cross section with axial position according to a hyperbolic-cosine (HC) function. The tapers connect conventional rectangular WR10 waveguide to the WR28. For minimum loss, the main mode electric field is parallel to the long side of the WR28. Using mode coupling theory, the position of maximum flare (inflection point) in the taper was optimized with respect to the coupling to higher order modes and the reflection of the main mode. The optimum inflection point position is about one-tenth of the taper length from the small end of the taper. Reflection and coupling were reduced by about 20 dB relative to a pyramidal (linear) taper of the same length. Comb-like dips in the transmission coefficient produced by resonances of the higher order modes in the oversize section were about 0.03 dB. Specially designed high-precision, adjustable WR28 flanges with alignment to about 5 μm were required to keep higher order mode amplitudes arising from the flanges comparable to those from the HC tapers. Minimum return loss was about 30 dB. This paper provides a foundation for further optimization, if needed. Methods are not specific to EPR or the microwave frequency band.

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