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A novel ground-plane shape to improve the horizontal gain for electrically steerable passive array radiator (ESPAR) antennas is investigated. The peak directivity of a monopole antenna with a finite ground plane, such as a circular or rectangular ground plane is at a higher angle from the horizon. Thus, the horizontal gain is lower than that of a dipole antenna. Using a circular ground plane of a half-wavelength radius with a skirt of a quarter wavelength wound around it, the angle of the peak directivity and the horizontal gain for the ground-based communication system were improved. For an ESPAR antenna - one of the monopole arrays - the horizontal gain was also improved. It was confirmed that it was possible to form the main-beam radiation and a beam in the horizontal plane, each in an arbitrary direction, by changing the control voltage to the passive element. This was shown by an experiment with an ESPAR antenna with a finite reflector, a feed element, and seven passive elements.