Metamaterial Antennas for Army Platforms

Period of Performance: 11/24/2008 - 05/23/2009

$70K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Applied EM, Inc.
100 Exploration Way, Suite 300
Hampton, VA 23666
Principal Investigator

Abstract

This effort addresses the integration of antenna apertures for conformal installation. A goal is to provide a common or multiband conformal aperture covering the complete communication band (e.g. JTRS 20MHz-2GHz). To address the challenges of conformality, wide bandwidth and miniaturization, we propose a new class of metamaterial antennas already demonstrated to deliver optimal gain x bandwidth performance. Several techniques, including magnetic material loadings, meandering, reactive/LC loading for wave slow down and impedance matching are proposed in combined fashion to realize a novel class of metamaterial-based antennas. A most important concept brought forward is the realization of anisotropy via the simple means of controlled printed line coupling on otherwise uniform substrates. The several more parameters, enabled by anisotropy, provide added degrees of freedom to realize optimal radiators. Under this effort, a novel class of multiband and wideband conformal antennas is proposed incorporating miniaturization techniques whose elements are 0.05 of a wavelength at the lowest operation frequency. Available prototypes have already provided validation of the proposed miniaturization and wide bandwidth concepts. Under this effort, these concepts will be integrated to realize wideband miniature elements covering the JTRS band using minimal real estate and addressing challenges associated with armored vehicles.