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The effect of the mutual coupling between the array elements on the performance of the adaptive array antennas (AAA) is investigated when the actual received voltages which include the mutual coupling are directly used to estimate the weight vector based on the adaptive algorithm. The output signal-to-interference-noise ratio (SINR), the convergence of the adaptive algorithm and the synthesized pattern are evaluated to study the effect due to the existence of the mutual coupling. It is found that the mutual coupling affects the antenna adaptive gain, but does not affect the adaptive processing. It is also found that the mutual coupling does not always degrade the iterative convergence of the adaptive algorithm. It is proved that any invertible matrix for compensating the mutual coupling cannot improve the output SINR. It is also indicated that the radiation pattern can be correctly synthesized in the presence of the mutual coupling by introducing the universal steering vector (USV) whose element corresponds to the array element pattern.