Circular Retrodirective Arrays for Launch Vehicles

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This paper will present recent findings relating to the feasibility of a circular self-tracking (retrodirective) antenna array for launch vehicle applications. Circular retrodirective arrays (RDAs), are comprised of a single ring of elements placed on a cylindrical ground plane. A breadboard of a circular RDA has already been built and measured at QUB. The breadboard operated at 2.4 GHz (similar to the S band frequency range used for launch vehicle telemetry) and had 16 dipole elements. Work is also ongoing at QUB on circular RDAs using patch antennas, which offer reduced drag and are suitable for mounting in a conformal manner. The circular RDA is able to produce high gain, self-tracking operation over a 360 deg azimuthal range, compared to the 80 to -120 deg typical azimuthal scanning range achievable from a flat, planar RDA.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 08 Oct 2019
Event40th ESA Antennas Workshop - ESTEC, Noordwijk, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 08 Oct 201910 Oct 2019


Conference40th ESA Antennas Workshop
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