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Impedance Spectroscopy

  1. Apr 13, 2008 #1

    I have designed and built my own impedance spectroscopy instrument, using a lock-in amplifier approach, with a reference signal. I know the basic theory behind impedance and impedance spectroscopy. However, I would like some thoughts on experimental set-up.

    I have a reference source (generated by my instrument). To test I have a resistor (purely resistive element) placed between my reference to ground, with the input to instrument (vin) measuring the reference end of the resistor. I see a change in my magnitude AND in my phase, although this too can be seen on the scope between the ref signal and input signal - why for a resistor?

    Also, supposing I want to measure a capacitor or inductor, then would I also place these between as I placed the resistor?

    Does it depend on the values of the capacitance or inductance to how may the current and voltage lead or lag? or when any capacitance or inductance is in the path it immediately changes the phase by +90 or -90 deg?

    As you can see, I need a good resource for impedance spectroscopy which describes experimental set-ups etc ... Pref. online!

    Set-up diagram - correct - suggestions?

    Ref > ------------- + ------------ > Vin
    \ Resistor or element to be measured?
    --- 0v

    (please note if this diagram gets screwed when uploaded then the element should be connected to the part of the diagram marked with a '+')

  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 14, 2008 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    What you are describing is more commonly called Impedance Analysis, using measurements made with an Impedance Analyzer:


    As the application note suggests, you will need to compensate out parasitic error factors in your fixture, in order to make accurate complex impedance measurements.

    I'll move this thread to the EE forum for now. If you can post a more complete circuit diagram of your setup, we can offer some suggestions for how to compensate out some of the parasitic elements.
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