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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

REQUIREMENTS FOR VEHICLE ANTENNAS


IN MOBILE SATELLITE COMMUNICATION
SYSTEM

SUBMITTED BY

A.D.MALLESWARARAO
I /II MTECH-CESP
168W1D8001

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

INTRODUCTION:
A mobile satellite communication usually provides so-called bidirectional
communication, such as voice, data, and telex and facsimile for mobiles .The other
type of services offered is navigation and broadcasting. For each service the
frequency bands allocated by the Radio Regulation are often designated with
alphabetical symbols such as C, L, Ku and Ka bands, as shown in Table 1 .Some
examples of typical mobile satellite services are as follows.

Communication

Typical mobile satellite communication systems are INMARSAT, AMSC, MSAT,


and AUSSAT, in which the L-band (1.6/1.5 GHz) is used. The only exception is
Omni-TRACS in the United States, which is serviced in the Ku-band (14/12 GHz).
In Japan, use of the S-band (2.5/2.4 GHz) has been studied for a domestic system.
In recent years, research on the feasibility of advanced mobile satellite
communications using the Ka-band (30/20 GHz) has started, and typical research
and development programs are the ACTS in the United States and the COMETS in
Japan.

Navigation

A typical system is the GPS, in which L-band (1.6 and 1.3 GHz) frequencies are
used from a satellite to the earth.

Broadcasting
This service is to broadcast TV and radio programs from a satellite to the earth.
Although the present systems are designed for fixed terminals, not for mobiles, an
antenna system for trains and ships has been developed to receive TV programs
from the broadcasting satellite (BS) satellite in Japan.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1. SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS FOR VEHICLE ANTENNAS

1.1 MECHANICAL CHARACTERISTICS

1. Compact and lightweight equipment is a self-evident requirement for


vehicle antennas in addition to ease of installation and mechanical
strength .
2. In case of ship borne antennas, the installation requirement is not as severe
compared to that of aircraft and cars, because even in small ships there is a
little space to install an antenna system.
3. In case of cars, especially for small, private cars low profile and low weight
equipment is an essential requirement.
4. The low air drag must be one of the most important requirements for aircraft
antenna.

1.2 ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS

1. Since the gain of an antenna is decided by its physical dimensions, a


compact antenna necessarily has a low gain.
2. Accordingly, it is inevitable for vehicle antennas not to have enough
performance such as gain, radiation power, and receiving capability, because
of their small physical dimensions.
3. For the system as a whole, the relatively low performance of vehicle
antennas has to be compensated for by a large antenna and a high-power
amplifier onboard the satellite. So the requirements of transmitting and
receiving performance of vehicle antennas mainly depend on the satellite
capability
It includes:
A. Frequency and Bandwidth
B. Gain, Beam width and Beam Coverage
C. Polarization, Axial Radio and side lobes
D. G/T and EIRP

A. Frequency and Band Width


In almost all present and forthcoming systems using GEO satellite the L-
band is used in communication links between the satellite and mobiles .In

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

proposed systems such as IRIDIUM and ODYSSEY, the s-band and L-band
are allocated in WARC 92.

B. Gain, Beam width and Beam Coverage


The required gain is decided by a link budget .Figure 6.2 shows the
relationship between gain and aperture size, and Figure 6.3 shows the
relationship between gain and half-power beam width (HPBW),
respectively. From Figure 6.3, the HPBW of a 15-dBi antenna is about 30
deg, and that of a 4-dBi is about 100 deg. In this chapter the former is called
a directional antenna, and the latter is called an omnidirectional antenna.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

C. Polarization, Axial Radio and side lobes


Circular polarized waves are used in order to estimate the need for
polarization tracking. In the INMARSAT system, right hand circular
polarization has been used.

Figure 6.4 shows the relationship between polarization mismatch loss and
axial ratios of receiving antenna, in which ARa and ARb denote axial ratios
of transmitting and receiving antennas.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

D. G/T and EIRP


Although gain is essential factor in considering antennas, the figure of merit
G/T is more commonly specified from the standpoint of satellite
communications system noise temperature T at an input port of a low gain
amplifier (LNA) is defined by (6.1) and the system gain G is defined at the
same port, taking account of losses caused by tracking, feed lines and a
radome.
T=Ta/Lf+To (1.0-1.0/Lf) +Tr-----------(1)

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

Equivalent isotropically radiated power (EIRP) is an important value in


evaluating the transmitting performance of a terminal including an antenna
gain (dB) and output power of the high power amplifier, taking account of
feed losses such as feed lines , cables, and a diplexer

1.3 PROPAGATION PROBLEMS


Telecommunication over earth space links for maritime mobile satellite
systems lead to propagation problems substantially different from those
arising in the fixed satellite service.
Due to the use of L-band frequencies for INMARSAT systems, the effect of
ionospheric scintillation is not negligible.
Tropospheric effect such as rain attenuation and tropospheric scintillation
will be negligible for the said frequency band.
In the following section, breif explanation is present.

1.3.1 Multipath fading due to sea surface reflection


1. Multipath fading due to sea reflection is caused by the interference between
direct and reflected radio waves. The reflected waves are composed of a
coherent component and an in coherent component that fluctuate due to the
motion of the sea waves.

2. Figure 6.6 shows estimates of amplitude of the coherent component for an


omnidirectional antenna as a function of significant wave height for low
elevation angles, the frequency is 1.5 GHz and polarization is circular.
3. Figure 6.7 shows the relationship between multipath power and elevation for
different antenna gain based on the method in [16].

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

4. Figure 6.8 shows the fading depth for antenna gain of 24, 20, 15 and 8 dBi
as a function of elevation angle with fully developed incoherent component.

5. Values estimated from the simple method give around the mean value of
those in Figure 6.7.
6. Mean value of fade duration (Td) and the fade occurrence interval (Ti) for a
given threshold level as a function of time percentage can be estimated from
the fading spectrum.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.3.2 Blocking by Ship Superstructure

1. Blocking is caused by Ship Superstructure such as the mast and various type
of other antennas.the geometry
2. For blocking by a mast is shown in Figure 6.10. Attenuation due to blocking
depends on various parameters such as diameter of the column, distance
between antenna and column, and size of antenna. Based on experimental
data reported so far, attenuation due to blocking caused by a column type
structure is given in Figure 6.11 for antenna gain of 20 and 14 dBi.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.4 FADING REDUCTION TECHNIQUES

For Low and medium gain systems the effect of multipath fading due to sea
surface reflection is a severe problem, especially at low elevation angles.
Fading Reduction Techniques applicable to these SES (ship earth station)
antenna are discussed in the following sections.

1.4.1 Diversity method


1. Diversity technique such as space, polarization and frequency diversities
have already been used practically in radio communication system subject to
severe fading
2. In any case the fading Reduction effect largely depends on the correlation of
signals with different branches concerning frequency, polarization, time
difference and so on.
3. Figure 6.12 shows the principal of space diversity with a switch and stay
algorithm.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

4. With this technique, the greatest Reduction effect is expected when the
correlation of the signal between the two antennas is near zero or lower.

5. Frequency diversity can produce a good Reduction effect when the


frequency difference between two signals is longer than the correlation
bandwidth of the multipath channel.

6. If the frequency bands become widened in the future this method could be
applicable

1.4.2 Polarization shaping method

1. For reflections from the sea Surface at 1.6/1.5 GHz, the horizontally
polarized wave is almost perfectly reflected, while the vertically polarized
wave is reflected with a large attenuation at grazing angle below 20 deg.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

2. The phase is adjusted by a phase a shifter inserted in one of the ports of the
short backfire antenna feed, as shown in Figure 6.14(a).

3. Figure 6.15 (a-c) shows the field experimental results.


4. Figure 6.15(a) shows the effect of reduction for down-link (1.54 GHz)
fading and up-link (1.64 GHz) fading with the optimum phase shift for 1.54
GHz frequency at an elevation angle of 5 deg.
5. Figure 6.15(b) shows the preset value of the optimum phase for the elevation
angles, with (ON) and without (OFF) fading reduction.

6. In the figure, data denoted by ON are the depth received by the 40-cm
modified SBF mentioned below, with optimally controlled polarization
given by additional phase as shown in Figure 6.15(b).

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

7. A right circularly polarized wave is divided into two components of right


and left circularly polarized waves by sea reflections.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

8. Figure 6.17(a, b) show the reflection coefficient of the wave in amplitude


and phase.

9. The electrical constants of sea water are chosen to be r =70 for dielectric
constant, =5.5 S/m for conductivity and f =1.54 GHz for frequency.
10.The phase difference between the both components is almost constant and is
independent of the elevation angles.

11.The output power of the cross-polarized component on terminal T4 ,


however ,has been dissipated in the conventional antenna circuit , as shown

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

in Figure 6.18 from 6.2and 6.3.

12.To accomplish this fading reduction, an attenuator, a phase shifter and a


power combiner must be added to the ordinary antenna equipment as shown
in Figure 6.18.

1.4.3 Pattern Shaping Method


It is possible to suppress the reception of a reflected signal by using a shaped
pattern Antenna that has low gain radiation characteristics in the direction of sea
reflected waves. This method may be realized by an array antenna or a shaped
reflector antenna. The radiation pattern is usually shaped so as to be flat in the
main beam and to be suppressed in other directions. The shaped pattern antenna,
however, has the disadvantage that the aperture efficiency of the antenna
generally becomes comparatively low.
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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.4.5 Maximum Level Tracking Method

If the radiation pattern of a receiving antenna is controlled so that the


received signal intensity is always maintained at a higher level, the fading
could be substantially suppressed.

If the signal level increases, the control voltage is allowed to change


continuously in the same direction. If not, the polarity of the control voltage
has to be reversed to control the variable phase shifter in the opposite
direction. Fading can be reduced by repeating this operation.
Figure 6.20 is a block diagram illustrating an example of this method as
applied to a quad helix antenna.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.4.5 Method Suitable for Digital Systems

1. In the method, the fading reduction effect will be decreased when the fading
with very slow fluctuation is dominant, as in very calm sea conditions.
2. The method is exceptionally useful in a calm sea when the coherent
component of the reflected wave is far stronger than the incoherent
component, and it has a considerable degree of fading reduction on the up
link path as well as the down link path with a very simple configuration, this
overcomes the disadvantages generally associated with diversity systems.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

3. Figure 6.22 shows a configuration of the INMASSAT- C SES with an RF


circuit that implements this scheme. In the figure, the area inside the broken
line is the new circuitry to be added to the current INMARSAT-C system.
4. The tow antennas (#1 and #2) are set at a vertical distance apart La, and the
signals received by each antenna are combined in a ratio that varies with a
specified period shorter than the interleave time period by means of a
variable combiner/divider.
5. Figure 6.22 also gives an example of the configuration of such a circuit.

1.5 MOUNT SYSTEMS

In the case of mobile communications, the antenna is always required to be


pointed towards the satellite in spite of any vehicles motions. Accordingly,
the mount system is one of the key problems in designing the mobile
antenna systems from the technical and economic viewpoints. In the section,
several types of mount system are introduced, especially those concerned
with ship borne antenna systems.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.5.1 Two-Axis Mount (El/Az, Y/X)

There are two typical mounts of the two-axis configuration: one is the EL/AZ
mount and the other is the Y/X mount. Simplified stick diagrams of both mounts
are shown in Figure 6.24.

In the Y/X mount, a full steerable function is achieved by permitting the rotation
angle from -90 to +90 deg to the X-axis and Y-axis.

In general, the ship rotation consists of seven elements: turn, roll, pitch, yaw,
heave, surge, and sway. Turn is change of headway. The components are
illustrated in Figure 6.25.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

The operational restrictions for the EL/AZ mount are as follows.

A limitation on the Az-axis rotation is needed to avoid the cable wrapping


around the Az-axis. When the rotation of the Az-axis reaches one end, the
axis has to reverse the rotation at a high speed, and consequently the signal
will be intermittent during the reverse rotation.
Either slip rings or rotary joints are needed to permit the endless rotation
around the Az-axis.
In the case of the EL/Az mount, very high angular rates and accelerations
are required for accurate satellite tracking at a

1.5.2 Three-Axis Mount (El/Az/X, El/El/Az,X/Y/X)

Three axis mount of an X/Y/X type is two-axis Y/X mount system with the X-
axis on it to remove the gimbal lock at the horizon.

The configuration is shown in Figure 6.26(c).

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.5.3 Four-Axis Mount (El/Az/Y/X)

In the mount, stabilized platform is made by the X-axis and Y-axis to take
out roll and pitch, and the two axis mount of the El/Az is settled on the
stabilized platform.
The axis configuration is shown in figure 6.27.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

1.6 TRACKING/POINTING SYSTEMS

1. Pointing/tracking is another important functional requirement of the mount


system.

2. It is economical, simple and reliable.

3. Tracking performance is a secondary requirement when an antenna beam


width is broad.

It includes:

Manual Track

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

Step Track

Program Track

1.6.1 Manual Track:

1. The manual track is simplest method, where in an operator controls the


antenna beam to maximize the received signal level.

2. At first the operator acquires the signal and moves the antenna around one
axis of the mount.

3. If the signal level increases, the operator continues to move the antenna in
the same direction.

4. If the signal level decreases, operator reverses the direction and continues to
move the antenna until the signal level is maximized.

5. The same process is repeated around the second axis and the antenna is held
after both axes are optimized.

6. The operator will try again to find the optimum points for both axes when
the received signal level decreases.

7. This method is suitable for land mobile communication, especially portable


communication and fly-away communication terminals.

1.6.2 Step Track:

1. The principle of the step track system is same as that of manual track. The
only difference is that an electric controller plays the role of an operator in
the manual track.

2. Sample/hold circuits are used to hold the signal levels.

3. The signal levels are compared before and after the antenna have been
moved by a present angular step.

4. In step track system, the accuracy depends on the comparators sensitivity.

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

5. Wrong decisions on the comparison of levels generally arise from S/N ratio,
the level changes due to the multipath fading and the stabilization error.

1.6.3 Program Track:

1. The concept of program track is based on the open-loop control slaving to


the automatic navigation equipment such as gyrocompass, GPS, the omega
system and the Loran-C system.

2. The navigation equipment especially the Navy Navigation Satellite System


(NNSS) is widely used in many ships.

3. In the program track, the antenna is steered to the point of the calculated
direction based on the position data of the navigation equipment .Since the
Satellite direction changes because of roll , pitch and turn , a function to
remove the rapid motions is required in the program tracking.

4. The error of the program track system mainly depends on the accuracy of
sensors for roll, pitch and turn (i.e., the stabilization error).

5. An adequate sensor for the program track system is a vertical gyro, because
it is hardly affected by the lateral acceleration.

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6. The controller calculates the direction of satellite to compensate for the ship
motions.

7. The program track system is also applicable to the four-axis mount. A


combination with the step track system is more desirable , because the error
of the program track system can be compensated for by step track system
and the error of the step track due to rapid ship motions can be
compensated for by program track system

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Requirements for Vehicle Antennas In Mobile Satellite Communication System

REFERENCES

1. T.Shiokawa, S.Ohmori and T.Teshirogi, Antennas for Mobile Satellite


Systems, Chapter 6.

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