Automated Antenna CAD for Installed Performance Assessment and Optimization

Period of Performance: 01/27/2014 - 04/30/2015

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Delcross Technologies, LLC
301 North Neil Street
Champaign, IL 61820
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Modern military and commercial aircraft include numerous RF systems and associated antennas serving a multitude of functions. The designed free-space performance of these antennas can be degraded by their installation on the airframe due to interactions with the platform, and the co-siting of so many RF systems creates enormous opportunity for undesired inter-system electromagnetic interference (EMI) via antenna-to-antenna (ATA) coupling. Installed antenna performance simulations can be performed to investigate these phenomenon, but modelling the antenna presents a major challenge because the details of antenna designs are often not known to the antenna/platform integrator. Our team, Delcross Technologies, LLC and Magus (Pty) Ltd, proposes to expand the capabilities of an existing antenna design tool so that it is capable of producing CAD models and associated configuration information for representative antenna designs. The user provides a set of available antenna specifications to this tool and a prototype is generated and iteratively refined to meet the specifications. A computational electromagnetic (CEM) model containing the antenna prototype is generated by the tool and a full-wave optimizer is used to further refine the model. The final result is a CEM model representing the antenna that is ready for use in installed antenna performance simulations.