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Gain and bandwidth enhancement of ferrite-loaded CBS antenna using material shaping and positioning

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Loading a cavity-backed slot (CBS) antenna with ferrite material and applying a biasing static magnetic field can be used to control its resonant frequency. Such a mechanism results in a

Loading a cavity-backed slot (CBS) antenna with ferrite material and applying a biasing static magnetic field can be used to control its resonant frequency. Such a mechanism results in a frequency reconfigurable antenna. However, placing a lossy ferrite material inside the cavity can reduce the gain or negatively impact the impedance bandwidth. This thesis develops guidelines, based on a non-uniform applied magnetic field and non-uniform magnetic field internal to the ferrite specimen, for the design of ferrite-loaded CBS antennas which enhance their gain and tunable bandwidth by shaping the ferrite specimen and judiciously locating it within the cavity. To achieve these objectives, it is necessary to examine the influence of the shape and relative location of the ferrite material, and also the proximity of the ferrite specimen from the probe on the DC magnetic field and RF electric field distributions inside the cavity. The geometry of the probe and its impacts on figures-of-merit of the antenna is of interest as well. Two common cavity backed-slot antennas (rectangular and circular cross-section) were designed, and corresponding simulations and measurements were performed and compared. The cavities were mounted on 30 cm $\times$ 30 cm perfect electric conductor (PEC) ground planes and partially loaded with ferrite material. The ferrites were biased with an external magnetic field produced by either an electromagnet or permanent magnets. Simulations were performed using FEM-based commercial software, Ansys' Maxwell 3D and HFSS. Maxwell 3D is utilized to model the non-uniform DC applied magnetic field and non-uniform magnetic field internal to the ferrite specimen; HFSS however, is used to simulate and obtain the RF characteristics of the antenna. To validate the simulations they were compared with measurements performed in ASU's EM Anechoic Chamber. After many examinations using simulations and measurements, some optimal designs guidelines with respect to the gain, return loss and tunable impedance bandwidth, were obtained and recommended for ferrite-loaded CBS antennas.

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  • 2013