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In this paper, the performance properties of several fundamental small-antenna designs are compared as a function of overall length and size (ka), where the antennas operate at or very near the same frequency. The objective of this work is to determine which basic design approach or configuration, if any, offers the best performance in terms of: achieving an impedance match; the radiation-pattern shape; the radiation efficiency; the half-power bandwidth; and the 2:1 VSWR bandwidth. The fundamental antenna designs studied here include the spherical folded helix, the cylindrical folded helix, the matched disk-loaded dipole, the matched spherical-cap dipole, and the multi-arm spherical resonator. In addition to discussing the different antenna designs, the fundamental approaches used in impedance matching and optimizing the bandwidth of these small antennas are described. Both numerical simulations and measured results are presented.
Date of Publication: Feb. 2010