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Lorentz Reciprocity Theorem Page 1

Lorentz Reciprocity Theorem


Reciprocity is an important concept in antennas because it produced implications when we reverse
the role of transmitting antennas and receiving antennas. A formal derivation of the Lorentz
Reciprocity Theorem begins by considering a volume containing two sets of sources, J 1 and J 2 ,
which each produce fields E 1 , H 1 and E 2 , H 2 , respectively, as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1: Volume containing two electric sources

Consider the quantity


(E 1 H 2 E 2 H 1 ), (1)
which is expandable using a vector identity as
( E 1 ) H 2 ( H 2 ) E 1 ( E 2 ) H 1 + ( H 1 ) E 2 . (2)
From Maxwells curl equations,
E1 = jH 1 (3)
H1 = jE 1 + J 1 (4)
E2 = jH 2 (5)
H2 = jE 2 + J 2 . (6)
Therefore,
(E 1 H 2 E 2 H 1 ) = jH 1 H 2 jE 2 E 1 J 2 E 1 (7)
+jH 2 H 1 + jE 1 E 2 + J 1 E 2
= J 1 E 2 J 2 E 1. (8)
Since we took the divergence of a quantity in (1), let us now integrate the divergence over the
volume of interest:

0
(E 1 H 2 E 2 H 1 )dv = (J 1 E 2 J 2 E 1 )dv 0 (9)
V V

Applying the Divergence Theorem to the left hand side:


"
0
(E 1 H 2 E 2 H 1 ) ds = (J 1 E 2 J 2 E 1 )dv 0 . (10)
S V

Prof. Sean Victor Hum ECE422: Radio and Microwave Wireless Systems
Lorentz Reciprocity Theorem Page 2

A more useful form of this theorem, applicable to antennas, is found by noticing that for electric
and magnetic fields observed a large distance from a source (e.g., a sphere of infinite radius
surrounding an antenna),

E H points in the radial direction normal to the sphere, n.

E and H are related through H = (n E)/.

Using the latter relation, the integrand on the left hand side of (10) can be re-written as

(E 1 H 2 E 2 H 1 ) ndS = (n E 1 ) H 2 (n E 2 ) H 1 (11)
= H 1 H 2 H 2 H 1 (12)
= 0 (13)

Hence,
0
J 1 E 2 dv = J 2 E 1 dv 0 (14)
V V
This is the form of the Reciprocity Theorem that is used in the analysis of receiving antennas.

Prof. Sean Victor Hum ECE422: Radio and Microwave Wireless Systems