Design of Stripline-Fed Dual Polarization Aperture-Coupled Stacked Microstrip Patch Phased Array Antenna for Wideband Application
Kim, David G.
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Recent days, antennas play an important role in wireless communication system. Microstrip patch antennas are well known to have positive features for cost-effective, low profile and broadband. This type of antenna can be used in wide range of applications such as in wireless communications, radar systems, and satellites. Inhibiting characteristics of single patch antenna with low gain and narrow band leads to the research area to have array configuration. Beam steering antennas are the ideal solution for various systems such as traffic control and collision avoidance radar systems. The goal of this work is to design and implement a dual-linear polarization stacked microstrip patch phased array antenna. Single stacked microstrip patch antenna fed by microstrip line was designed to have approximately 3 GHz bandwidth in X-band with another ground plane to form a stripline-fed. Stripline-fed design protects feed lines from any outside effects. The array configuration was adapted to design in order to accomplish beam scan angle of /- 30 degrees by /- 15 degrees. Binomial power distribution of 3x2 array structure was used in order to reduce grating lobes, and changing length of feed lines was implemented for phase shifting. Bowtie cross shape aperture and dual-offset microstrip feedline was used to feed radiating patches. For the feed network, T-split power divider was implemented and optimized to achieve low loss. The length of microstrip line was adjusted to meet desired phase shift that in wideband application, the length of the line had to be long enough to have similar wavelength response over broad frequency range. The antenna array was designed using standard equations and simulated by electromagnetic analysis software called Zealand's IE3D which is method-of-moments based simulator. The resulting measured impedance bandwidth and gain of both microstrip and stripline-fed single antenna are 43 percent and 5 to 10 dBi with low cross polarizations for all frequencies. The array antenna was measured to have 29 to 60 percent impedance bandwidths depending on the different types of beam scan angles. The gain of the array antenna is 8 to 13 dBi, and the beams are directed as required with /- 3 degrees beam scan angle tolerance. The array antenna had a small offset as compared with simulated results because of the fabrication process such as alignment, distorted feed lines while etching, and etc, but the bandwidths and array patterns were acceptable.