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Phased array theory and technology

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1 Author(s)
Mailloux, R.J. ; Rome Air Development Center, Hanscom AFB, Bedford, MA

This review of array antennas highlights those elements of theory and hardware that are a part of the present rapid technological growth. The growth and change in array antennas include increased emphasis on "special-purpose" array techniques such as conformal and printed circuit arrays, wide angle scanning arrays, techniques for limited sector coverage, and antennas with dramatically increased pattern control features such as low sidelobe, adaptively controlled patterns. These new topics have substantially replaced large radar arrays in the literature and constitute a major change in the technology. The paper presents a tutorial review of theoretical developments emphasizing techniques appropriate to finite arrays, but indicating parallel developments in infinite array theory, which has become the useful tool for analysis of large arrays. A brief review of the theory of ideal arrays is followed by a generalized formulation of array theory including mutual coupling effects, and is appropriate to finite or infinite arrays of arbitrary wire elements or apertures in the presence of a conducting ground screen. Some results of array tolerance theory are summarized from the literature and retained as reference throughout discussions of array component requirements and device tolerance for low sidelobe arrays. Examples from present technology include conformal and hemispherical coverage arrays, lightweight printed circuit arrays, systems for use with reflectors and lenses in limited sector coverage applications, and wide-band array techniques.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:70 ,  Issue: 3 )