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Multifunctional reconfigurable MEMS integrated antennas for adaptive MIMO systems

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6 Author(s)
Cetiner, B.A. ; Center of Space Sci., Morehead State Univ., NC, USA ; Jafarkhani, Hamid ; Jiang-Yuan Qian ; Hui Jae Yoo
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Multi-input multi-output systems with associated technologies such as smart antennas and adaptive coding and modulation techniques enhance channel capacity, diversity, and robustness of wireless communications as has been proven by many recent research results both in theory and experiments. This article focuses on the antenna aspect of MIMO systems. In particular, we emphasize the important role of the reconfigurable antenna and its links with space-time coding techniques that can be employed for further exploitation of the theoretical performance of MIMO wireless systems. The advantages of the reconfigurable antenna compared to the traditional smart antenna are discussed. Establishment of reconfigurable antennas requires novel radio frequency microelectromechanical systems technology, which has recently been developed in the authors' group. We briefly introduce this technology with emphasis on its distinct advantages over existing silicon-based MEMS technologies for reconfigurable antennas. A reconfigurable antenna design that can change its operating frequency and radiation/polarization characteristics is described. Finally, we present the experimental and theoretical results from impedance and radiation performance characterization for different antenna configurations.

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Communications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:42 ,  Issue: 12 )