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This paper presents a novel dielectric resonator filter exploiting dual TM11 degenerate modes. The dielectric rod resonators are short circuited on the top and bottom surfaces to the metallic cavity. The dual-mode cavities can be conveniently arranged in many practical coupling configurations. Through-holes in height direction are made in each of the dielectric rods for the frequency tuning and coupling screws. All the coupling elements, including inter-cavity coupling elements, are accessible from the top of the filter cavity. This planar coupling configuration is very attractive for composing a diplexer or a parallel multifilter assembly using the proposed filter structure. To demonstrate the new filter technology, two eight-pole filters with cross-couplings for UMTS band are prototyped and tested. It has been experimentally shown that as compared to a coaxial combline filter with a similar unloaded Q, the proposed dual-mode filter can save filter volume by more than 50%. Moreover, a simple method that can effectively suppress the lower band spurious mode is also presented.