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New Aspects of Electromagnetic Information Theory for Wireless and Antenna Systems

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2 Author(s)
Gruber, F.K. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Northeastern Univ., Boston, MA ; Marengo, E.A.

This paper investigates information-theoretic characterization, via Shannon's information capacity and number of degrees of freedom, of wave radiation (antenna) and wireless propagation systems. Specifically, the paper derives, from the fundamental physical point of view of Maxwell's equations describing electromagnetic fields, the Shannon information capacity of space-time wireless channels formed by electromagnetic sources and receivers in a known background medium. The theory is developed first for the case of sources working at a fixed frequency (time-harmonic case) and is expanded later to the more general case of temporally bandlimited systems (time-domain fields). In the bandlimited case we consider separately the two cases of time-limited and essentially bandlimited systems and of purely bandlimited systems. The developments take into account the physical radiated power constraint in addition to a constraint in the source L 2 norm which acts to avoid antenna superdirectivity. Based on such radiated power and current L 2 norm constraints we derive the Shannon information capacity of canonical wireless and antenna systems in free space, for a given additive Gaussian noise level, as well as an associated number of degrees of freedom resulting from such capacity calculations. The derived results also illustrate, from a new information-theoretic point of view, the transition from near to far fields.

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Antennas and Propagation, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:56 ,  Issue: 11 )