A Reconfigurable Antenna Design for Centimeter-Wave and Millimeter-Wave

Description:

Reference #: 01431

The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for a Reconfigurable Antenna Design for Centimeter-Wave and Millimeter-Wave

Background:

5G Networks are the future of mobile device connectivity and will greatly improve cell network speeds. In order to implement the newer technology, the antennas must have spectrum flexibility, which is the ability to operate at a wide range of spectrums, from centimeter-wave to millimeter-wave. 5G New Radio specifications have already standardized PHY/MAC protocols for dual operations on cmWave and mmWave. To cope with blockages from the user’s hand, body, and various environmental objects, a reliable mmWave connectivity requires multiple mmWave phased-array antennas accompanied by a fast switch to cmWave. Unfortunately, such a requirement brings a new challenge for the physical space on small, handheld mobile devices — the fundamental challenge is that physical space on mobile devices is limited. Recent efforts have been addressing coordination issues between cmWave and mmWave; yet, none has addressed the fundamental challenge of limited physical space.

Invention Description:

To address this challenge, we propose ReconMilli, a reconfigurable antenna design, that tunes the cmWave and mmWave frequency on the same physical antenna; which improves the spectrum flexibility for and saving the physical space on mobile devices. ReconMilli’s fundamental idea is intuitive. From the antenna design theory, we know, the operating frequency of an antenna is inversely proportional to the physical dimension of it; thus, by changing the dimension dynamically, we can reconfigure the frequency. Said differently, if we could “split” a cmWave antenna physically into smaller pieces, they would act as multiple mmWave antennas; similarly, if we could “join” multiple mmWave antennas physically, they would act as a single cmWave antenna. ReconMilli uses physical switches to realize the “split” and “join” functionality.

Potential Applications:

Any cellular or small mobile device which needs access to a cell network at high speeds. All phone manufacturers, tablet manufacturers. 

Advantages and Benefits:

Current technologies have a separate antenna for cmWave and mmWave, with mmWave antenna being much smaller. By combining the antenna into one until, space is saved on a mobile device which allows for better packaging and greater performance by allowing space for more battery or computing power. 

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
technology@sc.edu
Inventors:
Guoan Wang
Sanjib Sur
Srihari Nelakuditi
Keywords:
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