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8, AUGUST 1995
Stacked Annular Ring Dielectric Resonator Antenna Excited by Axi-Symmetric Coaxial Probe
S. M. Shum and K. M. Luk
Abstruct- A stacked annular ring dielectric resonator (DR) antenna composed of commercially available dielectric resonators and excited by axi-symmetric coaxial probe is studied computationally using the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method. The numerical results are checked against experimental measurements, and good agreement is observed. It is demonstrated that the introduction of air-gaps between the two DR's and also between the driven DR and the ground plane can improve the impedance bandwidth of the antenna significantly. The effects of the air-gaps thickness on the return loss and the bandwidth are discussed. The far-fields are also calculated by applying the electromagnetic field equivalence principle. The antenna produces an end-fire radiation field similar to that of an electric monopole.
are reported. For an annular ring dielectric resonator antenna excited in its TM016, the authors have found that the bandwidth can be improved by the introduction of an air gap between the driven DR and the ground plane . In this paper, we demonstrate that further substantial bandwidth enhancement can be achieved by stacking an identical DR on the top of, but without touching, the driven DR. The return loss and the radiation patterns of the stacked DR antenna are computed numerically using the finite-difference timedomain (FDTD) method. The FDTD method is chosen because it is capable of analyzing an electromagnetic problem involving complicated geometry. Application of FDTD to antenna problems has been reported recently [ 151-[ 181. In this paper, the FDTD method is applied to a fairly complicated antenna which discloses the strength of the method. The numerical results are compared with measurements. The effects of the air-gaps thickness on the return loss and the bandwidth are studied. The suggested antenna configuration is useful for implementing compact electric monopole antennas.
Since the introduction of dielectric resonator (DR) antennas by Long et al. in 1983 [l], there is a growing interest in studying their radiation characteristics -. The typical DR antenna has high radiation efficiency that can be operated at frequencies up to the millimeter wave band. Various feed mechanisms have been proposed -[ll], but monopole probe feeding [l] and aperture coupling [lo] are the two most common forms of excitation arrangement. The radiation pattern of a DR antenna is governed by its associated near field distribution, which can be very different for different excitation modes. For example, the HEM116 mode produces a broadside radiation pattern similar to that of a horizontal magnetic dipole [l] whereas the TM016 mode gives an end-fire radiation pattern similar to that of an electric monopole . The radiation Q factor of a DR antenna depends on its excitation modes as well as the dielectric constant of the ceramic material. The factor increases and hence the bandwidth decreases with increasing dielectric constant. For this reason, DR's of relatively low dielectric constant are almost always used in antenna applications. On the other hand, high dielectric constant DR's are readily available in the commercial market, and their application can make the size of the antenna smaller. Recently, a center probe-fed cylindrical dielectric ring resonator has been studied experimentally  and proposed for constructing a compact electric monopole antenna. The use of a dielectric ring resonator eliminates the hole drilling process required for probe penetration. An annular ring dielectric resonator with E,. = 36.2 has been employed, which results in a relatively narrow bandwidth (about 5% for return loss <10 dB). This may limit its usefulness in some applications. Bandwidth enhancement techniques for DR antennas have been addressed by some researchers , . By using DR's of low dielectric constants (4.5 and 10.5), a stacked cylindrical DR antenna with more than 25% bandwidth for SWR < 2 can be achieved . An enhancement in bandwidth for a CPW/aperture-coupled DR antenna has also been reported by using the similar stacked configuration . The use of two DR's of E, = 36 results in a 2 : 1 VSWR bandwidth of 5.3%. In both cases, attention has been paid mainly on the HEM116 mode, and only experimental results Manuscript received March 17, 1994; revised December 29, 1994. This work was supported by the CITYU Strategic Research Grant. The authors are with the Department of Electronic Engineering, City University of Hong Kong, 83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong. IEEE Log Number 9412892.
The geometry of the antenna under consideration is shown in Fig. 1. An annular ring dielectric resonator of inner radius b l , outer radius a1 , and height dl is driven by a probe of length 1 and radius rl , which extended from a coaxial transmission line and passed through an infinite ground plane. The radius of the coaxial aperture opening is rz. There is an air gap of thickness s1 between the ground plane and the driven DR. Another annular ring dielectric resonator of inner radius b z , outer radius az, and height dz which, acting as a parasitic element, is placed on the top of, but without touching, the driven DR. The separation between the two DR's is s g . This structure is rotationally symmetric, and only the T M o modes of the DR's are excited. The relevant Maxwell's equations for this particular problem are
where E,, E,, and H + are field components expressed in cylindrical coordinate system. By using the centered difference approximations on both the time and space first-order differentiations . the following sets of finite difference equations can be obtained
a t[E; p0Az
( i ,j
- E," ( i , j
0018-926)3/95$04.00 0 1995 IEEE
The reflection coefficient of the antenna is determined from the ratio of the Fourier transform of the reflected voltage waveform and the Fourier transform of the incident voltage waveform. a smaller value of s2 produces a wider impedance bandwidth but again accompanies a smaller value of return loss. 5. .9 mm. According to the specification. To obtain frequency characteristics of the antenna in one analysis cycle. the validity of the theoretical model is confirmed. The return loss decreases. s1 = s2 = 2 mm. At is the time step. The size of the computational domain is 410Ap x 410Az. Due to symmetry. .. As shown in the figure. the ABC's proposed by Merewether  are used to reduce the nonphysical wave reflections from the outer boundaries of the computational domain. all fields are set to zero and (8) is applied on a source plane inside the transmission line. To verify the numerical results. or a larger value of b / u [SI. . The figure shows that. 1 needed to be included in the calculations.152... the difference between numerical and measured resonant frequency of the TMol6 mode is within 2%. which satisfies the condition stated in (7).2 mm. . . 8.4 " 4.Z = 36. The reflection coefficients S the antenna is measured using a HP8510C Network Analyzer. however. . the time domain near fields on a surface enclosing the antenna are recorded. The effect of the thickness of the air gap between the two DR. the At chosen must satisfies the "Courant-Friedrichs-Lewy condition" ~151 Fig. The resonant frequency of the antenna will shift considerably. a reasonable agreement between the calculated and measured bandwidth is observed. s1 and s2 are both set to 2 mm thick. For the calculation of field components which lie on the interface between two dielectric materials.8 mm is assumed. the DR's have a high unloaded Q factor (E 10000) so the conductance o in the FDTD equations (5) and (6) has been ignored. and 1 = 6. the far fields are obtained by transforming the near fields in the frequency domain according to the electromagnetic field equivalence principle .890 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION. Computed and measured return losses of the stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna with ~~1 = E ~ Z= 36.9 mm. a i = a2 = 6. . The two air-gaps. however. The finite-difference equations (4)-(6) are then employed in a leapfrog time-stepping scheme to calculate the electromagnetic fields in a region containing the antenna . The percentage bandwidth (return loss >10 dB) of the stacked DR antenna is found to be around 18%.2625 m m and A Z = 0. The SMA launcher is fixed on a 30 cm x 30 cm ground plane made of copper plate. s2. The bandwidth of the antenna can also be increased by choosing a lower value of E. measurements are performed using DR's of similar dimensions. Foam layers are inserted between the two DR's and between the ground plane and the driven DR to 1 1 of simulate the effects of air-gaps.8 nun. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 5 d ApAt m - (7) where c is the velocity of light in free space.5 ps. . Both 1 1 are shown the calculated and measured results of the magnitude S in Fig. The l / p dependence of the excitation matches the electric field distribution in a TEM mode coaxial transmission line. At t = 0. Due to highly resonant characteristics of the antenna. and E . Furthermore. bllal = b2/az = 0. In this investigation. which represents a significant improvement comparing to the case of single element DR antenna with a large air-gap (11.8 I ' -40' 4 Fig. 2. To maintain numerical stability.8 . 3 shows the return loss of the stacked DR antenna as a function of frequency for different thickness of the air gap between the driven DR and the ground plane. and b 1/al = b z / a z = 0. The parameters T and to of the excitation pulse are set to be 50 A t and 150 At. AUGUST 1995 calculation measurement - . only half of the structure shown in Fig. ( i . Hence. respectively. The analysis technique described in the previous section is applied to study a stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna.2 " 5. 1.2 mm. The DR's are commercially available and with parameters ~~1 = E. The incident waveform is obtained from the simulation of an infinite long coaxial transmission line. the simulation is performed for 25 OOO time steps to allow the input response become approximately zero. The reflected voltage waveform is obtained by subtracting the voltage waveform recorded at the input port of the antenna by the incident voltage waveform. The permittivity E and the conductance U in (5) and (6) are set to appropriate values depending on the location of each component.5% when s1 = 4 mm) ~41.. A probe with radius T I = 0. The time steps used is A t = 0. Fig. etc. a i = uz = 6. NO. To obtain the far-field patterns. .jAz. on the return loss of the DR antenna is shown in Fig. the average value of the two dielectric constants of the two mediums should be used when applying (5) and (6) [203. It is observed that the thicker the air gap. The space steps used are A p = 0. where Ap and A Z are the space steps in the p and z direction. for a similar figure of bandwidth improvement and may .152. The half time steps indicate that the E and H are alternately calculated. dl = dz = 6. 2. the use of absorbing boundary conditions (ABC's) to terminate the computational domain are required. S I .2 mm. with increasing sl.(iAp.5 mm and 1 = 6. GeometIy of stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna. di = dz = 6. there exists a trade-off between impedance bandwidth and radiated power. After applying the image theory to remove the ground plane. Hence. j ) = E. When applying the FDTD method to antenna problems.4 Frequency (GHz) 6.6 6 " 6. in contrast to 31. the wider the bandwidth. 4.nAt). -30 t 4. a Gaussian pulse type of excitation is used which has the following form The parameter T determines the pulse width and is chosen to cover the frequency range of interest . The time domain near fields are first transformed to the frequency domain using the discrete Fourier transform (DFT). The parameter to is the time delay which enables a smooth "turn on" of the excitation . . 111. respectively.43. VOL. The antenna is excited by a probe made of copper wire and extending from the center conductor of a SMA launcher.
.. S. Their dimensions [l] S.2 mm. b l l a l = bz/az = 0.2 5. The E-plane pattern at frequency. 8 m m . it is more appropriate to enhance the bandwidth of the antenna by varying the air gaps thickness. the probe length is adjusted to produce a strong coupling to the T M 0 1 6 mode. :. a1 = a2 = 6.56 GHz is plotted in Fig.. Computed return losses of three stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antennas using DR’s of different dimensions: a) Dimension A. “Resonant hemispherical dielectric antenna.. It can be seen that the radiation pattern is similar to that of an electric monopole antenna.152. 43. McAllister. Therefore.9 mm. only moderate values of S I and sz should be chosen.. 5. b l l a l = bz/az = 0. vol. - h . dl = dg = 6.6 mm s2 = 2.2 mm. Antennas Propagat.4 4... d l = dz = 4. Experimental results have been obtained to verify the numerical results. sI = 0.2 mm.~~2 = 36.45 mm. Stacked DR antennas using resonators of different dimensions have also been analyzed using the same method and similar enhancements in the percentage bandwidths are observed..=O.” Electron.8 mm. Lett. Lett.. Long. C. and 1 = 6.4mm s . a1 = a2 = 9. “Rectangular dielectricresonator antenna. however. the discrepancy between calculation and measurement is probably mainly due to finite ground plane effect. and the agreement is good. Both numerical and experimental results indicate that the stacked configuration results in a substantial improvement in percentage bandwidth compared to that of an antenna using single DR. Conway. CONCLUSION The use of high permittivity annular ring dielectric resonators excited in the W O 1 6 mode as antenna elements is feasible but results in narrow bandwidths. and 1 = 6. .. - O* -30.8 5..IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION. d l dz = 4..4 6. To further confirm the proposed bandwidth enhancement technique..8 mm. Furthermore. the same analysis method is applied to calculate the retum losses of three stacked DR antennas using DR’s of different dimensions. W. moderate values of s1 and s2 should be chosen. . Computed retum losses of the stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna against frequency for different thickness of the air gap between the two dielectric resonators: €.0 mm. a1 = a g = 4. It is found that the impedance bandwidth of the antenna can be increased by choosing a lower value of sz and a larger value of SI.9 mm. and L. 5. Computed and measured E-plane radiation patterns of the stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna with ~~1 = &.8 mm. W. L. are obtained from data sheets provided by manufacturer... Computed return losses of the stacked annular ring dielectric resonator antenna against frequency for different thickness of the air gap between the driven DR and the ground plane: & I. All DR’s selected are standard products which have different resonant frequencies and same dielectric constants of 36. b l l a l = b:. A. -30 -40 I 0 2 4 6 8 IO 12 Frequency (GHz) Fig.6 6 6. f = 5.56 GHz. 8... a l = az = 6. A. VOL. . b) Dimension B. .237 and l = 5. = E ~ : .9 mm..8 Frequency (GHz) Fig.4 mm s2 = 2. A. also require custom-made DR’s. REFERENCES .. . The antenna produces an end-fire radiation field similar to that of an electric monopole. 4 W 1 2 .. Frequency (GHz) calculation measurement 8 8 8 - -35 Fig..8 mm Fig. The effects of stacking another annular ring dielectric resonator on the original antenna have been investigated using the FDTD method. Since there is a trade-off between impedance bandwidth and radiated power. 6 m m s. . For each antenna.. M. “The resonant cylindrical dielectric cavity antenna.. Long..Smm s . = 2 . NO. McAllister and S. 657458.” IEEE Trans.6 6 6. The effects of the air-gaps thickness on the retum loss and the bandwidth are studied. dl = d : ! = 6.. .. SI = sz = 2 mm.. The frequency-dependent return loss of the antenna has been calculated from the time-domain results using the Fourier transform.36 nun. Shen..8 mm s2 = 1.. for making a trade-off between impedance bandwidth and radiated power. 6. and 1 = 6.. = 8.. = ~~2 = 36..  M. W..4 4.  M.I = crz = 36. and G. Since an infinite ground plane is assumed in the calculation..=2.8 5. 19.. 1983. 4. AUGUST 1995 89 1 s..vol. the far-fields of the stacked DR antenna have been calculated by applying the electromagnetic field equivalence principle. .. IV..167 and 1 = 11.= 36. The frequency of operation is 5. b l l a l = bz/az = 0. Dimension A Dimension B Dimension C . Finally. The far fields of the antenna are obtained from the FDTD data using the mentioned method. sz = 2 mm.4 6. vol. a1 = a g = 5.98 mm... McAllister..8 . . d l = d2 = 6.27 nun.152. 3. The numerical results are summarized in Fig. The radiation patterns are also measured in an anechoic chamber using a HP85301C Antenna Measurement System.2 5.2 = 36.8 mm. b l l a l = b z / a z = 0. 1984.. 20. - 30‘ -30 c 4 4.. AP-31 pp.” Electron. pp. The proposed antenna configuration is useful for implementing compact electric monopole antennas. = 1 .. May 1983. 218-219..sl = 2 mm. . a1 = a2 = 6. ..52 nun.. - 4 4. 6./aZ = 0.190 and I = 6.0 mm (SI = sz = 2 mm in all cases). pp. It can be observed that similar percentage bandwidths are obtained in each case. b l l a l = bZ/az = 0... and c) Dimension C. in practice. d l = d:. Long.152. ~~1 = E ~ Z= 36.0 mm.
Lin.  R. and W. 277-278. 1988. 1989.” IEEE Trans.” IEEE Trans. TX 75275 USA. INTRODUCTION One of the most detrimental aspects of microstrip antennas is their inherent narrow bandwidth. Kranenburg and S. A. Simons and R. A. NOV. A.  K. Antennas Propagat. each having a large field concentration in the corresponding region. only a single resonant frequency is usually used. vol.. Taflove. Ittipiboon. [I41 S. (81 R. and Felix Schwering ’ Abstract-A novel dual-band microstrip antenna is introduced. A. Reineix and B. June 1993. especially for mass production using printed-circuit technology. for example) only a few narrow frequency bands are needed. H. Compat. The resonant frequencies can be selected over a wide frequency r a n g e . 38-39. vol. Inst. 397405. vol.. 1991. 30. EMC-24. “Radiation characteristics of cylindrical dielectric resonator antennas with new amlications. Antennas Propagat. 302-307. Ittipiboon.  A. B. “A half-split cylindrical dielectric resonator antenna using slotcoupling. NO. The entire structure is planar and can be easily mass-produced by using printed-circuit technology. 1991. [I61 A. Taflove. vol. 40. A. May 1971.  K. July 1990. Nalbandian and F. Bhartia and M.mpedance matching at those two frequencies is relatively simple. the proposed antenna is compact and free from any unwanted scattering. vol. 1. vol. pp. vol. and M. R. “Electricmonopole antenna using a dielectric ring resonator. In the proposed antenna. Bhartia. NJ 07703 USA. 38. Kishk. Lett. and D.. S . “Coplanar waveguide excitation of dielectric resonator antennas. 1994. K. vol. 1994.” Electron. pp. Jecko. The advantage of the proposed device is that the multilayer antenna is planar without any structure perpendicular to the ground plane. the layer thicknesses and the sizes and locations of the metallic strips.  X. Len. Lai. Antennas Propagat. “Theory and experiment of a coaxial probe fed hemispherical dielectric resonator antenna. M.” Electron. Here the antenna is considered to be a lossy resonating cavity. Y. pp. N.. A relatively simple design scheme is included. Lett.” ZEEE Trans. 813-821.” IEEE Trans.892 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION. This planar structure is attractive from a manufacturing point of view. “Effect of parasitic dielectric resonators on CPW/aperture-coupled dielectric resonator antennas. P. Nov. Soc.. AUGUST 1995  A. and M. Microwave Theory Tech. Scott Jr. A. 39. 119-122. Umashankarand A. Kajfez. pt. because all the modification is under the main patch. pp. Long. 1361-1369. K. Luebbers and John Beggs. Mongia. Cuhaci.  A.” Electron. the field modification under the radiation patch is achieved by using multiple layers with additional metallic strips placed at one of the dielectric interfaces. R. % ! f 7 l % e . In conventional microstrip antennas. C. Schwering are with the US Army CECOM. 39. and D. pp. “Accurate computation of the radiation from simple antennas using the finite-difference time domain method. Zunoubi. 5. Ahn. Antar. Dallas. Kajfez. 25.”ZEEE Trans. [I31 R. M.. 1994. Dec. pp.. an entirely planar dual-band microstrip antenna is introduced.”IEEE Trans. Antennas Propagat. Lett. Leung. the higherorder mode. Kranenburg and S.  K. Antennas Propagat. Nov. 1390-1398. -. H. pp. 31. Antar. Southem Methodist University.  D. AP-14. vol.” ZEEE Trans. Merewether. Shum and K. G. Although in recent years there has been some success in increasing the bandwidth. Ittipiboon. 1403-1407.. Piket-May. 1775-1787. pp.00 0 1995 IEEE . pp. In this communication. M. M. M. Y. Aug. Yee. 1232-1233. A.43. Luk.” ZEEE Trans. S. 1203-1212. vol.. “Time domain finite difference approach for calculation of the frequency dependent characteristicsof microstrip discontinuities. Eng. a wideband microstrip antenna with sufficient bandwidth for widely separated operating frequencies is not yet available. The physically intuitive cavity model is used for the analysis. In some applications (the global positioning system. vol. MTT-36. This structure results in two types of modes. Lett.. Lee.  D. vol. 41. Kishk. 1992. Auda. pp. “Numerical solution of initial boundary value problems involving Maxwell’s equations in isotropic media. vol.. Antennas Propagat. 1059-1068.. May 1966.  R.” IEEE Trans. 140. M. K. 1989.” ZEEE Antennas Propagat. 1988. pp. Q. vol. Oct. G. A. pp. [111 R. revised December 27. H. 153Cb1531.” Electron. “Analysis of microstrip patch antennas using finite differencetime domain method. “Microstrip transmission line excitation of dielectric resonator antennas. THEORETICAL CONSIDERATION Formulation: A typical multilayer dual-band microstrip is shown in Fig. 1990. Umashankar. “Characteristicsof dielectric ring resonator antenna with an air-gap. Cuhaci. St.” Electron. C. A cavity model was used for the analysis. and D. vol.. two desired resonant frequencies are obtained with the input impedance matched at those frequencies. in addition to the dominant mode. I. 7-16. Katz. M. 8. Maloney. In dual-band microstrip antennas. and K. pp. A. A. E. 3.. pp. 26. “Dielectric resonator antenna using aperture coupling. Compared with the stacked dual-band microstrip antenna [l]. M. no. vol. J. “FDTD calculation of wide-band antenna gain and efficiency. W. Kishk. “A novel method to analyze electromagnetic scatteringof complex objects. Ahn.  J. Dual-band microstrip antennas have been proposed to cover two narrow frequency bands while retaining their advantages as microstrip antennas [I]-. Smith. is utilized by altering the structure under the patch -. IEEE Log Number 9412896. With a proper choice of the dielectric constants of the substrate materials. Those strips divide the antenna cavity into two separate regions which have different effective dielectric constants. “A numerical study of a dielectric disk antenna above grounded dielectric substrate.” ZEEE Microwave Guided Wave Len.. Y. Oct. Electromagn. [lo] J. Electromagn. 336-338. The antenna was analyzed with a relatively simple but physically intuitive method based on the cavity model .. The antenna consists of multiple layers with metallic strips placed at one of the dielectric interfaces under the radiating patch. 13. Cuhaci. 2015-2016. 29. M. 11. News Lett. where the open edges are replaced by a perfect magnetic conductor (PMC). and B. 0018-926W95$04. A. “FDTD analysis of electromagnetic wave radiation from system containing hom antennas. “Broadband stacked dielectric resonator antennas.. Luk. K.’’ Proc. Lee is with the ElectricalEngineeringDepartment. [IS] R. vol.. pp. Mongia. Planar Dual-Band Microstrip Antenna Choon Sae Lee. “Transient currents induced on a metallic body of revolution by an electromagnetic pulse. Bang and K. vol. V. 41 pp. A.. A. pp. 1993. Compat. Martin. S. 37. A. vol. Kishk. Since the strips in the cavity are symmetrically placed and the feed is located at the Manuscript received July 7. 1993. K. 4 1 4 . . Feb.” ZEEE Antennas Propagat. Fort Monmouth. 1982. pp. pp. T. 24. Elec. Jan. 1989.. 1993. Mei. VOL. 1993. A. Vahakn Nalbandian. Long.” IEEE Antennas Propag. 1156-1 157. P.