Air Force

Advanced reconfigurable antenna

Provides for precise, on-the-fly, geometrical alterations to the antenna

Communications

State-of-the-art antenna technology still fails to deliver hardware that is functional across a wide bandwidth, accommodates variable power transmit and receive modes, and is capable of functioning in degraded or cluttered environments.

To address the above needs, Air Force researchers have developed a radio frequency emissive display (RFED) antenna and control system. The surface of this 2-dimensional antenna is composed of an array of interconnected pixels which are capable of either becoming conducting or resistive allowing for arbitrarily sized and shaped antenna structures.  Each pixel is controlled by biasing the base which alters the conductivity on the top portion of the pixel. The specific pattern which is active on the RFED is based on the desired direction, frequency range, and waveform necessary for a required transmit or receive function.

The RFED is capable of an extremely wide range of antenna geometries and on-the-fly signal maximization. It has the flexibility for use in highly mobile applications where weight is a major factor. It would be most apt for applications requiring flat profile, quick response directionality, and multi-band capability.

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