Computational investigation of patch antennas in plasma environment
Microstrip antennas are extensively used in spacecraft systems and other applicationswhere they encounter a plasma environment. A detailed computationalinvestigation of change in antenna radiation properties in the presence of plasma has been done. The study shows antenna properties such as the resonant frequency,return loss, radiation properties and the different characteristics of the antenna changes when it is surrounded by plasma. Particular focus of the work is to understand the causes behind these changes by correlating the complex propagation constant in the plasma medium, field distribution on the patch and effective dielectric of the antenna substrate with antenna parameter variations. Besides this, the study also provides important insights to explore the possibilities of designing frequency reconfigurable microstrip antenna where the substrate can be replaced with plasma and important antenna characteristics can be controlled by varying the plasma density. Plasma can be the potential frequency reconfigurable element since its dielectric properties can be varied by varying plasma density. It has high microwave power handling capability which makes it preferrable over current semiconductor technologies in situations such as electromagnetic attacks.Followed by this, minimization of power required to sustain plasma in a reconfigurable antenna has been done by using microplasma technology.
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