The **characteristic impedance** or **surge impedance** of a uniform transmission line, usually written Z_{0}, is the ratio of the amplitudes of voltage and current of a single wave propagating along the line; that is, a wave travelling in one direction in the absence of reflections in the other direction. Characteristic impedance is determined by the geometry and materials of the transmission line and, for a uniform line, is not dependent on its length. The SI unit of characteristic impedance is the ohm.

The characteristic impedance of a lossless transmission line is purely resistive, with no reactive component. Energy supplied by a source at one end of such a line is transmitted through the line without being dissipated in the line itself. A transmission line of finite length (lossless or lossy) that is terminated at one end with a resistor equal to the characteristic impedance appears to the source like an infinitely long transmission line.

Read more about Characteristic Impedance: Transmission Line Model, Lossless Line, Surge Impedance Loading

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