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A Planar Electronically Steerable Patch Array Using Tunable PRI/NRI Phase Shifters

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3 Author(s)
Abdalla, M.A.Y. ; Edward S. Rogers Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Toronto, Toronto, ON ; Khoman Phang ; Eleftheriades, G.V.

This paper presents a planar electronically steerable series-fed patch array for 2.4-GHz industrial, scientific, and medical band applications. The proposed steerable array uses 0deg tunable positive/negative-refractive-index (PRI/NRI) phase shifters to center its radiation about the broadside direction and allow scanning in both directions off the broadside. Using the PRI/NRI phase shifters also minimizes the squinting of the main beam across the operating bandwidth. The tunable PRI/NRI phase shifters employ 0.13-mum CMOS tunable active inductors, as well as varactors in order to extend their phase tuning range and maintain a low return loss across the entire phase tuning range. The feed network of the proposed array uses lambda/4 impedance transformers. This allows using identical interstage phase shifters, which share the same control voltages to tune all stages. Furthermore, using the impedance transformers in combination with the CMOS-based constant-impedance PRI/NRI phase shifters guarantees a low return loss for the antenna array across its entire scan angle range. The antenna array was fabricated, and is capable of continuously steering its main beam from -27deg to +22deg off the broadside direction with a gain of 8.4 dBi at 2.4 GHz. This is achieved by changing the varactors' control voltage from 3.5 to 15 V. Across the entire scan angle range, the array return loss is less than -10 dB across a bandwidth of 70 MHz, and the relative sidelobe level is always less than -10 dB. Furthermore, the proposed design achieves very low beam squinting of 1.3deg/100 MHz at broadside and a 1-dB compression point of 4.5 dBm.

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Microwave Theory and Techniques, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:57 ,  Issue: 3 )