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Metamaterial-Inspired Flat Beamsteering Antenna for 5G Base Stations at 3.6 GHz

Reis, J. R. ; Vala, M. ; Oliveira, T.O. ; Fernandes, T. ; Caldeirinha, R. F. S.

Sensors Vol. 21, Nº 23, pp. 8116 - 8116, December, 2021.

ISSN (print): 1424-3210
ISSN (online): 1424-8220

Scimago Journal Ranking: 0,80 (in 2021)

Digital Object Identifier: 10.3390/s21238116

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In this paper, a metamaterial-inspired flat beamsteering antenna for 5G applications is presented. The antenna, designed to operate in the 3.6 GHz at 5G frequency bands, presents an unique flat form factor which allows easy deployment and low visual impact in 5G dense scenarios. The antenna presents a multi-layer structure where a metamaterial inspired transmitarray enables the two-dimensional (2D) beamsteering, and an array of microstrip patch antennas is used as RF source. The use of metamaterials in antenna beamsteering allows the reduction of costly and complex phase-shifter networks by using discrete capacitor diodes to control the transmission phase-shifting and subsequently, the direction of the steering. According to simulations, the proposed antenna presents steering range up to ±20º, achievable in both elevation and azimuth planes, independently. To prove the concept, a prototype of the antenna has been built and experimentally characterised inside an anechoic chamber. Although constructed in a different substrate (FR4 substrate) as initially designed, beamsteering ranges up to 8º in azimuth and 13º in elevation, limited to the proposed case-studies, are reported with the prototype, validating the antenna and the usefulness of the proposed design.