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In order to reduce the thickness of a steerable beam square loop antenna, the effects of combining it with various periodic high impedance surfaces (HISs) are investigated. When a via-less HIS is used, the radiation pattern has high side lobes, which are shown to be due to surface waves propagating in the HIS lattice. Using a HIS with vias between the plates and ground removes the surface waves, but the beam is distorted due to strong coupling between the HIS's vias and the antenna element. Consequently a hybrid HIS is designed. This uses a via-less lattice beneath the loop, with vias at the edge of the HIS to suppress surface wave propagation. Consequently, a square loop antenna with four feeds on a hybrid HIS substrate is proposed for beam steering applications. This antenna has a low-profile with a total thickness of 4.69 mm for a test frequency band of 4.3 GHz to 5.0 GHz. It exhibits a gain of 8.65 dB at the test frequency (4.7 GHz). Compared to the earlier reported steerable square loop antenna, the new antenna achieves a 61% reduction in substrate thickness, a bandwidth enhancement by 150 MHz and an increase in gain by 1.95 dB.