Signal Integrity Basics: Digital Signals on Transmission Lines

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  • Author: Gary Breed
Signal Integrity is one of the “hot topics” in digital circuit design. SI, as it’s called, involves the quality degradation and timing errors of digital signal waveforms as they travel on conductors that make up the path, such as p.c. board traces, package structures and interconnects. These conductors are transmission lines, a term completely familiar to RF/microwave engineers, but not understood in the same terms by digital engineers. Also, the behavior we’re concerned with is referenced to the time domain, which is the normal environment of digital engineering, but is typically dealt with indirectly by RF/microwave engineers. Understanding SI requires both perspectives.
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