# CHAPTER 8 ANTENNAS 1

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1 CHAPTER 8 ANTENNAS 1

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3 Antennas A good antenna works A bad antenna is a waste of time & money Antenna systems can be very inexpensive and simple They can also be very expensive 3

4 Antenna Considerations The space available for an antenna The proximity to neighbours The operating frequencies you will use The output power Budget 4

5 Antenna Types High Frequency Mhz + 50 Mhz [ metres ] An antenna s size/length depends on the frequency It s functionality largely depends on the height above ground, as well as the polarity and it s configuration 5

6 Some Math Velocity of propagation 300,000,000 m/sec For 1 wavelength, above 30 MHz Frequency (f) = 300 / wavelength Wavelength (λ) = 300 / frequency Above 30 MHz, λ = 300/f metres or 984/f feet For a half wave λ = 150/f metres or 492/f feet Below 30 MHz λ = 286/f metres or 936/f feet (including the velocity factor 0f 0.95) For a half wave λ = 143/f metres or 468/f feet The length of a half wave dipole for 3.65 MHz L = 143/f = 143/3.65 = metres The higher the frequency the shorter the antenna The lower the frequency the longer the antenna 6

7 Types of Antennas Simple wire Dipole Folded dipole Trap dipole Offset or Windom antenna Phased dipoles Vertical or horizontal (both) Beverage wave antenna 7

8 Types of Antennas Metal Vertical Yagi Trap Yagi Phased arrays Loops Vertical or Horizontal Horns for super ultra high frequencies Mobile antennas 8

9 Antenna Polarization Vertical or horizontal Electrical vs Magnetic radiation Vertical waves 90 to the earth s surface Horizontal waves travel parallel to the earth s surface Usually wire antennas are horizontal but an inverted V dipole has a vertical component Yagi type antennas can be either vertical or horizontal Circular antennas can be both Usually, horizontally polarized antennas hear less noise 9

10 Isotropic Antenna The isotropic antenna is a hypothetical point source. It does not exist in reality but is considered as an important starting point considering different antenna designs Antennas from the theoretical to the practical The pattern is a Cardioid - a donut shape or a sphere Dipole Radiation Pattern 10

11 Polarization - Practical Antennas radiating a vertical polarization are best received by an antenna of like polarization Cross polarization reduces reception by as much as 20 db Bouncing DX signals probably have both polarizations Designing antenna polarization usually depends on the frequency being used - at 70 cm in the UHF band the elements are very short so either polarization is possible. Vertical is usually used, as repeaters are vertically polarized. 11

12 Resonance Antenna length is dependant on frequency The lower the frequency the longer the antenna elements Examples: Band Frequency Length ft 80 metres Mhz 124 ft

13 Isotropic Source Polarization by Element Orientation An isotropic antenna is a: hypothetical point source What is the antenna radiation pattern for an isotropic radiator? A sphere Polarization of an antenna is determined by: the electric field What does horizontal wave polarization mean? The electric lines of force of a radio wave are parallel to the earth's surface What does vertical wave polarization mean? The electric lines of force of a radio wave are perpendicular to the earth's surface 13

14 Polarization by Element Orientation What electromagnetic wave polarization does a Yagi antenna have when its elements are parallel to the earth's surface? Horizontal What electromagnetic wave polarization does a half-wavelength antenna have when it is perpendicular to the earth's surface? Vertical VHF signals from a mobile station using a vertical whip antenna will normally be best received using a: vertical ground-plane antenna A dipole antenna will emit a vertically polarized wave if it is: mounted vertically If an electromagnetic wave leaves an antenna vertically polarized, it will arrive at the receiving antenna, by ground wave: vertically polarized Compared with a horizontal antenna, a vertical antenna will receive a vertically polarized radio wave: at greater strength 14

15 Wavelength vs Physical Length The speed of a radio wave: is the same as the speed of light The velocity of propagation of radio frequency energy in free space is: kilometres per second If an antenna is made longer, what happens to its resonant frequency? It decreases If an antenna is made shorter, what happens to its resonant frequency? It increases The resonant frequency of an antenna may be increased by: shortening the radiating element 15

16 Wavelength vs Physical Length To lower the resonant frequency of an antenna, the operator should: lengthen it Adding a series inductance to an antenna would: decrease the resonant frequency 16

17 Wavelength vs Physical Length The wavelength for a frequency of 25 MHz is: 12 metres (39.4 ft) The wavelength corresponding to a frequency of 2 MHz is: 150 m (492 ft) At the end of suspended antenna wire, insulators are used. These act to: limit the electrical length of the antenna One solution to multi-band operation with a shortened radiator is the "trap dipole" or trap vertical. These "traps" are actually: a coil and capacitor in parallel 17

18 Decibels db Power Ratio : : :1 6 4:1 3 2:1 0 1:1-3 1:2-6 1:4-10 1: : :

19 Gain, Directivity, etc. What is meant by antenna gain? The numerical ratio relating the radiated signal strength of an antenna to that of another antenna The gain of an antenna, especially on VHF and above, is quoted in dbi. The "i" in this expression stands for: isotropic Approximately how much gain does a half-wave dipole have over an isotropic radiator? 2.1 db What is a parasitic beam antenna? An antenna where some elements obtain their radio energy by induction or radiation from a driven element If a slightly shorter parasitic element is placed 0.1 wavelength away from an HF dipole antenna, what effect will this have on the antenna's radiation pattern? A major lobe will develop in the horizontal plane, toward the parasitic element If a slightly longer parasitic element is placed 0.1 wavelength away from an HF dipole antenna, what effect will this have on the antenna's radiation pattern? A major lobe will develop in the horizontal plane, away from the parasitic element, toward the dipole 19

20 Gain, Directivity, etc. In free space, what is the radiation characteristic of a half-wave dipole? Minimum radiation from the ends, maximum broadside The front-to-back ratio of a beam antenna is: the ratio of the maximum forward power in the major lobe to the maximum backward power radiation The property of an antenna, which defines the range of frequencies to which it will respond, is called its: bandwidth What is meant by antenna bandwidth? The frequency range over which the antenna may be expected to perform well How can the bandwidth of a parasitic beam antenna be increased? Use larger diameter elements 20

21 Vertical Antennae To calculate the length in metres (feet) of a quarter wave vertical antenna you would : Divide 71.5 (234) by the antenna's operating frequency (in MHz) If you made a quarter-wavelength vertical antenna for MHz, how long would it be? 3.6 metres (11.8 ft) If you made a half-wavelength vertical antenna for 223 MHz, how long would it be? 64 cm (25.2 in) If a magnetic-base whip antenna is placed on the roof of a car, in what direction does it send out radio energy? It goes out equally well in all horizontal directions What is an advantage of downward sloping radials on a ground plane antenna? It brings the feed point impedance closer to 50 ohms 21

22 Vertical Antennae What happens to the feed point impedance of a ground-plane antenna when its radials are changed from horizontal to downward-sloping? It increases Which of the following transmission lines will give the best match to the base of a quarter-wave ground-plane antenna? 50 ohms coaxial cable The main characteristic of a vertical antenna is that it will: receive signals equally well from all compass points around it Why is a loading coil often used with an HF mobile vertical antenna? To tune out capacitive reactance What is the main reason why so many VHF base and mobile antennas are 5/8 of a wavelength? The angle of radiation is low Why is a 5/8-wavelength vertical antenna better than a 1/4-wavelength vertical antenna for VHF or UHF mobile operations? A 5/8-wavelength antenna has more gain 22

23 Yagi-Uda Three-Element Directional Antennas 23

24 Yagi-Uda Three-Element Directional Antenna 24

25 Yagi Antennae How many directly driven elements do most Yagi antennas have? One Approximately how long is the driven element of a Yagi antenna for 14.0 MHz? metres (33 feet and 6 inches) Approximately how long is the director element of a Yagi antenna for 21.1 MHz? 6.4 metres (21 feet) Approximately how long is the reflector element of a Yagi antenna for 28.1 MHz? 5.33 metres (17.5 feet long) The spacing between the elements on a three-element Yagi antenna, representing the best overall choice, is : 0.2 of a wavelength. What is one effect of increasing the boom length and adding directors to a Yagi antenna? Gain increases What are some advantages of a Yagi with wide element spacing? High gain, less critical tuning and wider bandwidth 25

26 Yagi Antennae What are some advantages of a Yagi with wide element spacing? High gain, less critical tuning and wider bandwidth Why is a Yagi antenna often used for radio communications on the 20-metre band? It helps reduce interference from other stations off to the side or behind What does "antenna front-to- back ratio" mean in reference to a Yagi antenna? The power radiated in the major radiation lobe compared to the power radiated in exactly the opposite direction What is a good way to get maximum performance from a Yagi antenna? Optimize the lengths and spacing of the elements If the forward gain of a six- element Yagi is about 10 db, what would the gain of two of these antennas be if they were "stacked"? 13 db 26

27 Wire Antennae If you made a half-wavelength dipole antenna for MHz, how long would it be? 5.08 metres (16.62 ft) What is the low angle radiation pattern of an ideal halfwavelength dipole HF antenna installed parallel to the earth? It is a figure-eight, perpendicular to the antenna The impedances in ohms at the feed point of the dipole and folded dipole are, respectively: 73 and

28 Wire Antennae A dipole transmitting antenna, placed so that the ends are pointing North/South, radiates: mostly to the East and West How does the bandwidth of a folded dipole antenna compare with that of a simple dipole antenna? It is greater What is a disadvantage of using an antenna equipped with traps? It will radiate harmonics What is an advantage of using a trap antenna? It may be used for multi- band operation What is one disadvantage of a random wire antenna? You may experience RF feedback in your station 28

29 Quad / Loop antennae What is a cubical quad antenna? Two or more parallel four- sided wire loops, each approximately one-electrical wavelength long What is a delta loop antenna? A type of cubical quad antenna, except with triangular elements rather than square The cubical quad" or "quad" antenna consists of two or more square loops of wire. The driven element has an approximate overall length of: one wavelength The delta loop antenna consists of two or more triangular structures mounted on a boom. The overall length of the driven element is approximately: one wavelength Approximately how long is each side of a cubical quad antenna driven element for 21.4 MHz? 3.54 metres (11.7 feet) Approximately how long is each side of a cubical quad antenna driven element for 14.3 MHz? 5.36 metres (17.6 feet) Approximately how long is each leg of a symmetrical delta loop antenna driven element for 28.7 MHz? 3.5 metres (11.5 feet) 29

30 Quad / Loops Which statement about two- element delta loops and quad antennas is true? They compare favourably with a three element Yagi Compared to a dipole antenna, what are the directional radiation characteristics of a cubical quad antenna? The quad has more directivity in both horizontal and vertical planes Moving the feed point of a multi-element quad antenna from a side parallel to the ground to a side perpendicular to the ground will have what effect? It will change the antenna polarization from horizontal to vertical What does the term "antenna front-to back ratio" mean in reference to a delta loop antenna? The power radiated in the major radiation lobe compared to the power radiated in exactly the opposite direction 30

31 31

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