Practical Antenna Design for Wireless Products
I have been working on radio frequency (RF) solutions for more than 27 years, covering circuit, printed circuit board (PCB), and antenna designs; my entire career has been almost all about wireless technology. I have seen or developed many successful and some less-successful wireless products during my engineering and management careers. Most of the less successful products typically have difﬁculties with obtaining certiﬁcation on electromagnetic interference/electromagnetic compatibility (EMI/EMC) compliance or have short communication range compared to the competitors’ products. Those issues are all related to RF design, particularly on the antenna design. Besides providing consultancy or design services to help companies correct the problems, I decided to share my design experience on antennas to the industry by teaching and presenting in RF-related courses and seminars organized by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), EDICON, Microwave Journal, and a few others about 10 years ago. Teaching has been fun and enjoyable to me. However, the number of students, engineers and managers who attended my courses and seminars were still limited. A few years ago, Patrick Hindle from Microwave Journal referred me to Artech House with the possibility of writing a book on antenna design. This posed a great opportunity for me to share my antenna design experience with a larger group of people. That was when the writing of the book started.
This book is written as a comprehensive design guide or handbook covering antenna fundamentals, basic antenna designs, simulation, and measurement to practical implementation strategies so readers can use them to design antennas with optimum performance in actual products and systems. With an emphasis on practicality, this book does not address too deeply the underlying theories of antennas. Interested readers can ﬁnd references at the end of each chapter for greater detail. This book can also help antenna designers, circuit designers, and design managers bridge the gap between electromagnetic theory and its application in the design of practical antennas in actual products.
The book is organized into 9 chapters covering different aspects of antenna designs. Chapter 1 presents introductory remarks on commonly used antennas on the market so that readers can get an idea of what will be discussed in more detail later in the book. Their basic properties and features will be highlighted as well. The radiation mechanism of antennas will be described and illustrated to show how and why antenna radiates. It provides a fundamental concept to explain how electromagnetic ﬁelds are generated and used as a medium for wireless communications.
Chapter 2 provides insights on the speciﬁcations and performances of different antennas. The antenna parameters of radiation pattern, beam solid angle, directivity, effective aperture, gain, polarization, and efﬁciency will be discussed. A basic understanding of them is important to antenna or system designers to identify their impact on overall system performance.
Followed by the brief introduction in Chapter 1 to the commonly used antennas on the market, Chapter 3 discusses those antennas in more detail and with practical examples. Their key antenna parameters are derived mathematically for performance comparison and their advantages and disadvantages will be highlighted in different applications and products.
If designed properly, the commonly used antennas discussed in Chapter 3 such as the dipole or monopole offer good performance. However, the required size of the antenna is large for optimum performance. To address the size issue, Chapter 4 provides some advanced design techniques to min-iaturize and optimize the antenna despite the limited size of the product. That is particularly important for handheld wireless devices that call for small size, light weight, and low power consumption.
Chapter 5 focuses on the discussion of electromagnetic simulation and software for antenna design. They are useful to predict and optimize the antenna performance for complex structures as it would be very difﬁcult or impossible to ﬁnd the analytical solutions for analysis. With the electromagnetic simulators, the design effort and development time can be minimized and shortened, respectively. Some of the commonly used electromagnetic simulators, both commercial and free, are discussed.
Antenna performance can be affected by the environment (i.e., having ﬁnite ground plane, proximity to adjacent components or metal objects). Modeling all the environmental conditions for simulation is quite involved, and the simulation time is lengthy. Instead of simulation, measurement is more direct and effective to validate the designs. Antenna measurement is the main discussion in Chapter 6. In addition to the fundamental parameters of antennas, measurements on other RF parameters mandated by regulatory authorities are also addressed.
Besides the fundamental antenna parameters presented in Chapter 6, another parameter, impedance, is also very important as it plays a crucial role in determining the overall efﬁciency of an antenna. Chapter 7 presents the basic theory of S-parameters, impedance measurement equipment, and techniques. Impedance matching topologies and matching elements with practical considerations are also discussed in detail.
Chapter 8 discusses the design issues and considerations of antennas from product and system perspectives. The importance of understanding the speciﬁcations and requirements of the antenna is identiﬁed, and the system analyses and considerations are then provided. Since PCB layout design, component placement, and mechanical design are also the key design elements determining the ultimate performance of the antenna, their relevance and special design rules are also presented. To offer more design details and insights, several design examples on commercial products are used for illustration.
Chapter 9 identiﬁes the future trends on antennas for Internet of Things (IoT) devices due to their recent popularity and huge market potential as predicted. In addition, technology-speciﬁc design trends based on new materials and design approaches are also presented. More different materials, structures, fabrication processes, and combinations of them are expected to come out in the future, which may improve antenna performance dramatically
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|November 20, 2019|
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