A simulation tool for the analysis and design of leaky wave antennas in laterally shielded planar technology with application to metamaterials
2012-05-28T15:22:39Z (GMT) by
Leaky-waves have been a topic of increasing interest in the last years, with diverse practical applications in many different engineering fields. From periodic, FSS, EBG or even metamaterial leaky-wave based antennas to waveguide filters and higher efficiency energy guiding, they all share a common base structure: a travelling-wave propagating within a metal encapsulation, that can be open or closed, and altered by a planar metallization of periodic nature, from which the energy may radiate. Due to the fact that these antennas are usually electrically large and the periodic printed circuit requires a certain grade of complexity, 3D commercial software is prohibitively time consuming. Also, the homebrew methods developed up to this day are either not rigorous and accurate enough or unable to deal with complex periodic geometries. At this point, the evolution of leaky-wave antennas needs a solid, efficient and versatile tool where to base the future design research on. In this work a novel simulation tool for waveguide embedded leaky-wave antennas is presented. It is based on a full-wave Method of Moments applied to the spectral domain Green Functions for a rigorous modal analysis of the finite structure. The use of Subdomain basis functions allows the software to model complex periodic geometries, overcoming a main limitation, and the analytical nature of the method combined with its 2.5D approach, results in a significant computing time reduction. It is built on a modular coding philosophy and provided with a user-friendly graphical interface, and an intuitive working procedure, making the program not only fast and accurate, but also easy to use and extend to new geometries. Finally, it is remarkable the educational potential of this new analysis software, since it identifies higher order effects as bandgaps and multi-harmonic radiation from a complete and simple modal approach.