Matthew Schirmacher and Matthew Clark
Advisors: Dr. James Sennott and Dr. S. Navarro
The project is to design, build, and test a circularly polarized microstrip
antenna for use with the Global Positioning System (GPS) here at Bradley.
The goals were to make this antenna as small as possible and to be cost
effective. The most basic technique used in the past to achieve circular
polarization is the use of two linearly polarized antennas, one of them
with a 90 degree phase shift. The most basic structure that satisfies this
requirement is the combination of two dipoles in quadrature. This solution
is not optimal in the aerodynamical sense because low profile antennas
must be used in moving vehicles. Other excellent antennas that produce
circular polarization are the conical spiral and the corrugated horn but
are too bulky and expensive. An antenna that satisfies the electrical and
mechanical constraints is the microstrip patch. This antenna can also be
fed in such a way that two linearly polarized fields, one with a 90 degree
phase shift, are produced using a single patch.
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