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Plasma reflectors for electronic beam steering in radar systems

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1 Author(s)
Manheimer, Wallace M. ; US Naval Res. Lab., Washington, DC, USA

The author describes investigations into methods of generating a planar plasma for use as a reflector for radar waves. The use of the plasma reflector could allow electronic beam steering at frequencies above what is generally viable for phased arrays. Three aspects of the planar plasma production are investigated: localization of the plasma, main plasma production, and long-term viability of the system. Possible applications include ship-based antennas at X-band, airborne antennas at 94 GHz, and space-based antennas at 60 GHz. The author discusses system considerations for the three potential radar configurations. Results and potential small-scale experiments to test various aspects of the concept are discussed

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Plasma Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 6 )