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J. of Active and Passive Electronic Devices, Vol. 1, pp. 311-316 2006 Old City Publishing, Inc.

Reprints available directly from the publisher Published by license under the OCP Science imprint,
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A Novel Fractal Defected Ground

Structure for Microstrip Line

H.W. LIU1,2,*, Z.F. LI1 AND X.W. SUN2

1 Department of Electronic Engineering, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai 200030, China

2 Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology,

Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200050, China

A novel fractal defected ground structure(DGS) for microstrip line is pro-

posed. The DGS unit cell is composed of a Sierpinski carpet. The proposed
fractal DGS can provide more excellent bandgap characteristics and trans-
mission characteristics than the conventional dumbbell- shaped DGS. The
bandgap characteristics of the fractal DGS are explained by an equivalent
circuit using a circuit analysis method. Comparison between simulation and
measurement confirm the validity of the proposed fractal DGS.

Keywords: Author to provide keywords


Defected ground structure (DGS) for the microtrip line, which has etched
defects in the backside metallic ground plane, is one hotspot of microwave
circuit design recently [1-2]. Compared to photonic bandgap(PBG)[3], DGS
has simple structure and potentially great applicability to design microwave
circuits such as filters, amplifiers and oscillators[4-7]. In previously
reported DGS, the DGS cell possessed a simple geometrical shape, such as

*Corresponding Author: E-mail:;; Prof. Li

Zhengfan; Dept. Electronic Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, No. 1954, Huashan
Rd., Shanghai, 200030; China; Telephone: (86-21)62511070 Ext. 8605; Fax: (86-21)62933001.

312 LIU, et al.

rectangle. In this letter, a novel fractal DGS cell, which is composed of a

Sierpinski carpet, is proposed. Its bandgap and slow-wave characteristics
are better than the conventional dumbbell-shaped DGS. The validity of the
proposed fractal DGS is verified by simulation and measurement.


Fig.1 shows schematics of the proposed fractal DGS and a conventional
dumbbell-shaped DGS with the same occupied surface. The DGS is etched

Schematic of defected ground structure.
a Fractal DGS
b Dumbbell-shaped DGS
a=4.5mm, w=2.4 mm, and g=0.4mm

on the metallic ground plane. The fractal DGS cell shown in Fig.1 possesses
some self-similarity, just like a Sierpinski carpet, and shows some fractal
characteristics[3]. The substrate for simulation and measurement was
RT/Duroid 5880 with 31 mil of thickness and a dielectric constant r of 2.22.
The line width w is chosen for the characteristics impendance of 50
microstrip line. DGS is etched in the bottom of the metallic ground plane
and indicated by dashed line.
Fig.2 shows the simulation of transmission characteristics of the DGS
described in Fig.1. The simulation shows the attenuation poles of the fractal
DGS shift lower than that of the dumbbell DGS in the same occupied
surface. Moreover, the characteristics of return loss of the fractal DGS are
better than that of the dumbbell DGS. Fig.3 presents the comparison of the
slow-wave factors of the proposed fractal DGS(a1=1.8 mm and a2=0.9 mm)
and the dumbbell DGS for the same defected area on the ground plane. It is
observed that the proposed fractal DGS has greater slow-wave factors than
dumbbell DGS. The above analysis shows that the proposed fractal DGS
can provide the size reduction of microstrip structure and bandgap
characteristics more efficiently than the dumbbell DGS.
Fig. 4 shows the equivalent circuit of the proposed fractal DGS. The
bandgap characteristics can be explained by a parallel LC resonator(Lr and
Cr). The radiating effects are taken into account and represented by Rr. The
equivalent circuit parameters can be derived from the S-parameters based

EM simulation for the proposed fractal DGS and dumbbell DGS.
314 LIU, et al.

Comparison of the slow-wave factors.




Zo Zo

Equivalent circuit of a microstrip line with fractal DGS.

on the electromagnetism(EM) simulation shown in Fig.2. Once the S-

parameters are obtained, these parameters can be extracted by using the
relationship between the S-parameters and ABCD-parameters as following:

parameters as following:
(1 + S11 ) (1 + S 22 ) S12 S 21 1
B= =
2S 21 Yr (1)

1 1 1
Yr = + jBr = + j ( o Cr + )
Rr Rr o Lr (2)

Cr =
c o
o ( )
o c (3)

Lr =
o2 C r (4)

where o and c are the resonant frequency and 3dB cutoff frequency,
Shown in Fig.2, o and c are 5.75 GHz and 3.76 GHz, respectively, while
a1 and a2 are chosen to be 1.8 mm and 0.9 mm. Using Equ(1)-(4), the extracted
Rr, Lr and Cr are 2106.8 ohm, 2.4016nH, and 0.3115pF, respectively.


Fig.5 presents the simulated and measured transmission characteristics of

the proposed fractal DGS. Good agreements between the simulation and

Transmission characteristics of the fractal DGS.
a1=1.8 mm, a2=0.9 mm, w=2.4 mm, and g=0.4mm
316 LIU, et al.

measurement validate the proposed DGS and its equivalent circuit

modeling. EM simulation and circuit simulation are using APLAC and
Agilent ADS, respectively.


A novel fractal DGS for microstrip line is presented. Its characteristics

and equivalent circuit are discussed. Simulation and measurement confirm
the validity of the proposed fractal DGS and its equivalent circuit modeling.
Additionally, the novel fractal DGS can provide more excellent bandgap
characteristics and transmission characteristics than the conventional
dumbbell-shaped DGS.


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