Shielded open-circuited probe for in-situ measurements of soil permittivity in Very high frequency (VHF) and Ultra high frequency (UHF) bands

Muzalevskiy, Konstantin; Karavaysky, Andrey/ Transactions Of The Institute Of Measurement And Control/

In this paper, the shielded open-circuited probe operating in the wide frequency range from 75MHz to 2GHz is proposed. The probe is made of an SubMiniature version A (SMA) flange connector. The central rod of the SMA connector emerges from a coaxial transition in the flange and shielded by four rods. The robe design allows us to calculate of the probe reflection coefficient S11 used simple analytical transmission line model (TEM wave mode), the parameters of which were calibrated on a set of substances with a known frequency spectrum of permittivity. The refractive index (RI) and normalized attenuation coefficient (NAC) retrieval technique is based on solving the inverse problem of minimizing the residual norm between measured and calculated frequency spectra of reflection coefficient S11. After calibration, the root-mean-square error (determination coefficient) between the measured and calculated module and phase of the reflection coefficient S11 for the sets of calibration media air, distilled water, butanol, pure ice, water solution with NaCl of salinity of 8.9% do not exceed 0.26dB (0.995) and 0.03 rad (0.999), respectively, in the frequency range from 75MHz to 2GHz. The root-mean-square error (determination coefficient) between the measured RI and NAC spectra for four soil cover samples (variation of the clay fraction from 10.5 g/g to 47.6 g/g) using the proposed probe and a precision coaxial cell not exceeds 0.109 (0.993) and 0.057 (0.986), respectively, in the frequency range from 75 MHz to 2 GHz. As a result, it is experimentally shown that RI и NAC can be measured by the proposed non-precision probe with an error comparable to the precision coaxial cell.