Understanding the behaviour of infinite ladder circuits

Ucak C., Yegin K.

EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICS, vol.29, no.6, pp.1201-1209, 2008 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 29 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Doi Number: 10.1088/0143-0807/29/6/009
  • Page Numbers: pp.1201-1209


Infinite ladder circuits are often encountered in undergraduate electrical engineering and physics curricula when dealing with series and parallel combination of impedances, as a part of filter design or wave propagation on transmission lines. The input impedance of such infinite ladder circuits is derived by assuming that the input impedance does not change when a new block of impedance is added. However, the impedance derived from this assumption may lead to incorrect conclusions if it is not treated carefully. Sometimes, in the literature, the input impedance behaviour of infinite ladder circuits is referred to as a paradox, leaving students and educators in doubt. This study intends to clarify this confusion and help to better comprehend the behaviour of the input impedance of infinite ladder circuits.