Session 6: RF & Security
Surface Agnostic Conformable Antenna Arrays
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
8:25 AM - 8:45 AM
The Boeing Company is working with NextFlex and a university partner to mature multilayer patterning technologies for array antennas using advanced manufacturing on flexible surfaces. This talk will present a low profile surface agnostic conformable antenna array developed in part with funding from the NextFlex Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing Innovation Initiative (FHE-MII). The goal of this program is improve the manufacturing readiness level of FHE technologies for RF antenna applications. Initial products include a 2x2 and 4x4 antenna with circular polarization. The Boeing 2x2 array has a 10% bandwidth, is less than 1 mm thick, operates on any backplane, and can be bent to a radius less than four inches. Our antennas have been demonstrated at D-band (2.4 GHz) and X-band (10 GHz). 2x2 arrays operating at 10 GHz have been measured with gain of 9.4 dBi and a 3 dB beamwidth greater than 60 degrees. Our team will show a 4x4 array using conductive ink. Furthermore, this presentation will provide a direct comparison of the antenna performance between printed ink and copper laminate. Both processes demonstrate sufficient antenna gain, coverage, and VSWR for use in a variety of applications. This effort provides a path for the development of low cost flexible antennas that can be mounted either permanently or temporarily to complex contours for commercial and military applications.
Dr. John E. Rogers is a co-principal investigator for the NextFlex FAAT effort with more than 10 years of industry and academic experience in design, fabrication, and characterization of RF passive wireless technologies. Prior to joining The Boeing Company in 2017 he worked at Harris Corporation’s Microelectronics Division, Melbourne, FL for 6 years before returning to graduate school to earn his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Dr. Rogers work at the University of Florida produced the first RF passive wireless dynamic pressure sensor capable of operating up to 1000°C. Dr. Rogers has 15 patents issued and 2 patents pending relating to RF passive wireless technologies.
Boeing Research & Technology