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A Fresnel zone plate is designed to perform the function of a doubly-hyperbolic lens. The focusing characteristics of the zone plate and the lens are compared using both measured data and body-of-revolution finite-difference time-domain simulations. The results from this comparison are used to evaluate the use of zone plates as focusing elements in a free-space, focused-beam measurement system. A set of two zone plates is used to perform measurements of the material properties of a dielectric sheet, and the results are compared to the results from a standard system which uses two doubly-hyperbolic lenses.