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Títol: Microstrip antennas with thick metallization for the enhanced performance of aircraft antennas

Estudiants que han llegit aquest projecte:


Departament: TSC

Títol: Microstrip antennas with thick metallization for the enhanced performance of aircraft antennas

Data inici oferta: 01-02-2023     Data finalització oferta: 01-10-2023

Estudis d'assignació del projecte:
Tipus: Individual
Lloc de realització: EETAC
Paraules clau:
Antena microstrip, antena blade, RCS, Mètodes numèrics, TCAS, radio altimeter, ELT
Descripció del contingut i pla d'activitats:
Microstrip patch antennas, composed of a metallic on a dielectric substrate and with a ground plane on the other side, excel as an example of lightweight, low-cost, low-profile, easy-to-manufacture and small antennas. Such antennas are reconfigurable, versatile in nature and amenable to array design, whereby they suit agile frequency tuning and fast beam scanning, especially if compared with conventional options such as monopoles. Furthermore, being planar (or almost planar) type of antennas and most suitable for integration with the rest of circuitry, microstrip antennas have received great attention for the development of active antennas in the design of Aircrafts or Missiles. Additionally, such antennas can be easily merged with shapes conforming to the airframe, wing and fuselage of the aircraft/ missile structure thus enhancing their use in civilian or military aeronautics applications; namely, TCAS, ADS systems or satellite communications.
In this project, it is proposed the study of the influence of a microstrip design with thick metallization on the capacity of miniaturization of the antenna design and on the frequency bandwidth performance. To this aim, an Integral-Equation based numerical method of radiation analysis will be modified and employed. Also, since the substrate thickness of the microstrip antennas is proportional to the frequency bandwidth, a thick substrate with low dielectric constant will be assumed in the analysis stage to ensure a wideband application with good antenna efficiency.
Overview (resum en anglès):
In today's evolving aeronautical industry, the demand for compact, lightweight, and efficient antennas is on the rise. Replacing conventional onboard antennas with conformal, planar configurations that seamlessly integrate into aircraft and missile structures, bring a multitude of advantages in terms of both performance and aerodynamics.

In this work, microstrip patch and blade antennas, composed by a metallic conductor above a ground plane and separated by a dielectric substrate, are studied. The wavelength for aeronautical applications is shorter than the radius of curvature of the fuselage structure, so we can analyse these antennas as if the ground plane were infinite.

In this project, we investigate primarily the influence of a microstrip or blade antenna with thick metallization on the antenna design. We have developed an Integral-Equation based numerical method of electromagnetic scattering analysis of a perfectly conducting plate above a ground screen, employing MATLAB as the software tool for the design and simulation process. An equivalent problem is produced by using Image theory and solved by different approaches. It is proposed the Thick-plate implementation, which provides accurate analysis of plates with non-zero thickness, in cases where if negligible thickness is assumed, the simulation fails, like for example with grazing incidences. Thick-plate approach also speeds up the design process as the computational solving time is drastically reduced.

Numerous RCS results and rigorous simulations are presented, allowing to compare the behaviour of the different approaches. In particular, the effect of the thickness of the vertical plates on the error of the Thick formulation is evaluated for different plate dimensions, heights above the ground plane and incident plane waves. This work establishes a basis for future improvements in the design of blade antennas with improved wideband behaviour.

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