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159-3D-printed multiband electrically small antennas for small satellites

159-3D-printed multiband electrically small antennas for small satellites

  • Contract :Ph.D.
  • Duration :36 months
  • Working time :Full-time
  • Experience :Entry Level
  • Education level :Master’s Degree, MA/MS/MSc

Your mission at CNES :

Reducing the size of platforms and payloads is a major challenge for the deployment of nanosatellites.  This constraint also applies to on-board antennas, which must have a small footprint and low weight. The use of multi-band antennas represents an interesting solution to minimize the number of on-board antennas while covering the various frequency channels useful for the mission (TM/TC, data links...).
To reduce the dimensions of an antenna it is common to use dielectric materials with high permittivity in which the wavelength is decreased [1]. This solution has been successfully applied to the miniaturization of printed antennas, dielectric resonator antennas (DRA), etc...
Recently, ENAC, ISAE-SUPAERO, and ANYWAVES have shown the potential of additive manufacturing (AM) of ceramics in the engineering of high dielectric constant materials. For example, a 2.5 GHz DRA made of a 3D-printed anisotropic ceramic has been designed [2]. Here, the permittivity tensor of the ceramic is controlled by repeating in space a unit cell with a spatial period much smaller than the wavelength in the material. The structured material finally behaves macroscopically as a homogeneous dielectric medium whose permittivity depends on the pattern of the unit cell.
If one now considers a larger spatial period according to the wavelength, the structured material may behave totally differently. Indeed, at specific frequencies the electromagnetic wave propagation may be forbidden due to an electromagnetic band gap (EBG) in the material [3] which can be used for example to improve antenna radiation properties [4]. Such properties may also be obtained using metasurfaces that is often used to reduce antenna dimensions [4-6]. This frequency dependence (also known as frequency dispersion) of shaped materials and metasurfaces properties opens up interesting prospects, particularly for the design of low-profile multiband antennas.
The main objective of this Ph.D. is to evaluate the potential of engineered periodic structures, namely 3D-printed ceramics and metasurfaces, in order to design multiband electrically small antennas. The challenge is thus to reduce the volume occupied by on-board size of the antennas in nanosatellites while preserving the bandwidth, the radiation pattern, and the polarization purity. Such antennas could be applied to the needs of space industry, for the L, S and X-band.
Work planning
Do a state of the art of electrically small and multiband antennas, as well as periodic structures (e.g., metasurfaces) and design tools (e.g., Floquet theory, characteristic modes…).
Study the operating principle of an antenna based on dual-band periodic cells.
Design the antenna using electromagnetic software.
Analyze the antenna characteristics and control of the frequency bands.
Study on the possibility of reducing the size of the antenna.
Measure the antenna.

For more information, contact  christophe.morlaas@enac.fr from ISAE/DEOS

Candidate profile searched:

Student with strong skills in applied electromagnetism and especially in antenna and microwave engineering (Master in microwave engineering).


We suggest you to contact first the PhD supervisor about the topics and the co-financial partner (found by the lab !). Then, prepare a resumé, a recent transcript and a reference letter from you M2 supervisor/ engineering school director and you will be ready to apply online !

CNES will inform about the status of your application in mid-June.

More details on CNES website : https://cnes.fr/en/web/CNES-en/10685-st-doctoral-grants.php

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