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Calibrate Power Sensors Using VNA?

Question asked by abrush on Jul 2, 2009
Latest reply on Jul 2, 2009 by Dr_joel
A customer has suggested using a PNA-X as the transfer standard for calibrating a power sensor.  The mechanism seems simple enough, and I found a journal article indicating that a TRW lab had used an 8510C for that purpose in the 2000 timeframe.  I'm hoping that here I can get some information relating to the uncertainty of the result.

Assume that the PNA-X will be calibrated using 2.4mm SOLT cal kit, then a Gamma-corrected power transfer from a thermistor sensor to reference receiver done.  I think the the key contributors to the subsequent transfer of power back into a "DUT " power sensor are:

1) Uncertainty of the "standard" thermistor (close to uncertainty from NIST or NPL calorimeter)
2) Residual uncertainty from port-match correction on transfer-in (S11 and port match uncertainties)
3) Reference receiver power nonlinearity
4) Reference receiver short-term drift
5) Residual uncertainty from port match correction on transfer-out
6) DUT monitor (power meter) uncertainty.
7) Connection repeatibility

Now, all but 3 and 4 are relatively well characterized from studies of the "Direct Compare" method that has been used for a long time.  Where can I find details of the PNA-X reference receiver linearity and drift?