One of the most common measuring tasks in RF engineering involves analysis of circuits (networks). A network analyzer is an instrument that is designed to handle this job with great precision and efficiency. Circuits that can be analyzed using network analyzers range from simple devices such as filters and amplifiers to complex modules used in communications satellites.
A network analyzer is the most complex and versatile piece of test equipment in the field of RF engineering. It is used in applications in research and development and also for test purposes in production. When combined with one or more antennas, it becomes a radar system. Systems of this type can be used to detect invisible material defects without resorting to X-ray technology. Using data recorded with a network analyzer, imaging techniques were used to produce the following figure which shows a typical material defect.