Omnidirectional Conformal Patch Antenna at S-Band with 3D Printed Technology

TitleOmnidirectional Conformal Patch Antenna at S-Band with 3D Printed Technology
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsSanchez-Dancausa, P. P., J. L. Masa-Campos, P. Sanchez-Olivares, and G. E Marin
JournalProgress In Electromagnetics Research C
AbstractA conformal patch array antenna with omnidirectional pattern in the azimuth plane at S-band is presented. A theoretical study of the generated ripple in the omnidirectional radiation pattern according to the number of faces that conform the array has been computed. A six-faced regular prism 3D structure has been chosen following a maximum 3 dB ripple criteria in the omnidirectional radiation pattern. A rectangular microstrip patch fed by a microstrip line has been designed as single radiating element. An equal power divider has been designed as feeding network in microstrip technology to feed each radiating element. Several prototypes have been manufactured and measured to validate the theoretical and simulated results. The entire conformal array has been assembled on a hexagonal regular prism manufactured in PolyLactic Acid (PLA) material using a 3D printer. In spite of the complexity of the proposed antenna structure, the used manufacturing processes, such as microstrip and 3D printing, allows to perform a low cost, low weight and compact final antenna. A higher radiated field ripple than the expected one is generated due to small deviations between experimental and theoretical critical parameters such as the feeding network performance or the 3 dB beam-width of the single element radiation pattern. A maximum ripple value of 4 dB has been experimentally obtained in the omnidirectional radiating pattern.