Magister Antemnae: the masters of the antennas. In addition to the legitimation gained "in the field", developing and producing cutting-edge solutions for customers, Calearo Antenne SpA is also active at an academic level, encouraging the production of scientific contributions useful to face the increasing technological and managerial challenges of the markets in which it operates.

Below, a selection of papers developed on the topics of applied research in antennas and in management, written by Calearo Antenne SpA, occasionally with the collaboration of prestigious international universities and research institutions.

A compact 3D antenna for automotive LTE MIMO applications

A low-profile and compact 3D antenna operating at LTE, GSM and UMTS frequency bands (790-2690 MHz) is proposed for a vehicular 2×2 MIMO system. The performance of the single 3D radiating element is here analyzed. Then, the two-antenna system performance is analyzed in terms of impedance matching, isolation and envelope correlation coefficient, highlighting the effect of some geometrical parameters such as inter-element distance and reciprocal orientation. Preliminary measured results are presented.

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A novel 3D antenna for LTE MIMO systems

Two low-profile and compact 3D antennas operating at LTE, GSM and UMTS frequency bands (790-2690 MHz) are here numerically analyzed for a vehicular MIMO system. After an analysis of the single element performance, two identical 3D antennas are considered. A preliminary numerical analysis on the effect of geometrical parameters such as inter-element distance and reciprocal orientation have been discussed to improve the two-antenna system performance in terms of impedance matching, isolation and envelope correlation coefficient.

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A 3D LTE antenna for vehicular applications

A novel compact 3D antenna operating at LTE, GSM and UMTS frequency bands (790-2690 MHz) is proposed for vehicular applications. The antenna consists of a metal-sheet properly cut and shaped to fit an overall volume of 50×50×30 mm 3 . A Planar Inverted-F Antenna is designed to cover the lower frequency band (below 1GHz), while an integrated folded monopole adds higher frequency resonances. An elliptical-shape pin is connected to a 50Ω input port to improve impedance matching, mainly at the higher frequencies. Preliminary numerical simulations in terms of reflection coefficient and gain are here presented and discussed.

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Performance assessment of the Smart mAritime saTellite terminal for mUltimedia seRvices and conteNts (SATURN) system

In this paper, the main measured performance results of the SATURN (Smart mAritime saTellite terminal for mUltimedia seRvices and conteNts) system are summarized. The SATURN project aimed to design and develop a maritime user terminal for small leisure boats (up to 20m of length). Such a terminal allows navigators for receiving contents through a DVB-SH channel and transmitting small amount of data via an ETSI S-MIM return channel (based on the Enhanced Spread Spectrum protocol) using the S-Band (2 GHz). The system performance has been measured in a real environment, emulating the sea-condition by means of an ad-hoc designed Motion Simulator.

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Potential implications and road mapping of satellite bidirectional s-band antennas in the automotive market [antenna applications corner]

Car radios were introduced for commercial (broadcast) and professional (communications) purposes in the 1920s [1]. This novelty was just one of many innovative technologies and products that were taken into mass production in passenger cars, and vehicles in general, since then [2, 3]. Wireless communications in particular nowadays represent an important business area for the automotive market, for “infotainment” (information and entertainment), comfort, environ mental, and safety-related services. In the field of connectivity - and specifically in the context of antennas for wireless functions - the case of the European satellite technology based on S band is analyzed here. The DVB-SH standard (Digital Video Broadcasting-Satellite Handheld [4]) is considered for the forward link, and the ETSI S-MIM standard (S-Band Mobile Interactive Multimedia [5, 6]) is considered for the return link. These standards can provide satellite services for mobile terminals, such as broadcasting of radio, TV, and data by using DVB-SH, and interactive services on the return link by using the ETSI S-MIM.

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SATURN: Smart mAritime saTellite terminal for mUltimedia seRvices and conteNts

The following paper presents the fundamental aspects of the SATURN initiative proposed by a group of Italian companies active in developing of new solutions which exploit the potential of S-band communications. SATURN is the acronym for “Smart mAritime saTellite terminal for mUltimedia seRvices and conteNts”. Using S-band technology will make it possible to provide new services and contents on board small (10 to 24 meters) maritime vessels where satellite services are not usually enabled. The innovation of the paper is the presentation of a new cost effective solution composed of antenna, gateway and plotter in order to address the maritime market segment not covered by other bi-directional communication satellite solutions. The proposed solution will provide new satellite services currently not available while the boats are far from the coast

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S‐band transmit/receive antenna systems for automotive satellite applications

It happened over a hundred years ago that Henry Ford introduced his famous Model T passenger car. At that time, variants and extra features were presumably rather irrelevant compared with the automobile itself, which represented the suitable response to the need of millions of new customers. Since then, a vast range of changes, functions, improvements, and so on were designed and eventually taken into mass production. Among those, in particular since the 1920s, car radios were introduced for commercial (broadcast) and professional (communications) purposes [2]. Wireless communications nowadays represent an important area for the car industry, for infotainment (information and entertainment), comfort, environmental and safety‐related services.

In the field of connectivity, and specifically in the context of antennas for wireless functions, it may be of particular relevance to consider the proposition of a new European satellite technology based on S band, namely, the Digital Video Broadcasting‐Satellite Handheld standard for the forward link and the European Telecommunications Standards Institute S‐band Mobile Interactive Multimedia standard for the return link, both in S‐Band.

The mentioned standards are able to provide new satellite services for mobile terminals, such as broadcasting of radio, TV, and data contents, by using Digital Video Broadcasting‐Satellite Handheld and interactive services on the return link.

This paper describes the activities related to the mentioned S‐band system carried out by Calearo in the frame of the COSTARS (low COst S‐band receive/Transmit Antenna for vehiculaR applicationS) project, co‐funded by ESA‐ESTEC. In particular, the authors first briefly analyze the state of the art of the services present in the car industry from the perspective of automotive antennas, analyzing the current wireless applications and considering the amount of highly integrated functionalities already present, or being proposed. Then, the design and performances of a switchable dual polarized automotive transmission/reception antenna (COSTARS project) and usable for S‐band automotive applications are introduced. The paper also includes a description of the antenna industrialization and production line and the related measurements performed during the project. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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Costars: Low cost S-band receive transmit antenna for vehicular applications

The present paper describes the design, manufacturing and testing of a switchable dual polarised Tx/Rx antenna for S-band vehicular applications. The paper also addresses antenna production and the related validation tests. The main contributions and novelty of the antennas designed in the framework of the project are the full integration with ESA requirements and needs, requirements and constraints of automotive market (thanks also to the multi-decennial experience of Calearo Group) for satellite mobile services. Moreover the products are ready for the market and the solutions are highly integrated (including low noise block and filtering section) in a low-cost and shark-fin-like aesthetical concept where the industrialization process has been actively considered and developed.

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G/T estimation for DVB-SH automotive 2-port switchable CP antennas

In this contribute a multi-port approach for the estimation of the G/T parameter for DVB-SH RX antenna prototypes is presented. G/T evaluation is done from the measurements of the active gain pattern and amplification chain parameters. The proposed methodology has been compared with the Y-method. A link between the two has been presented and a discussion about advantages and disadvantages is given.

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State of the art review for automotive satellite antennas

The number of Satellite Services have increased tremendously during the last years: although initially driven only the military applications, commercial automotive applications collected the mass market attention in the recent years. Nowadays, these satellite services are mainly used for voice, data, internet, and tracking applications. Vehicles are increasingly being equipped with on-board electronic systems, such as Global Positioning System (GPS), Mobile Phone and Digital Communication Systems (GSM, UMTS and DCS), Digital Video and Audio Broadcast Services (DVB-T, DAB), which are usually integrated together, sharing the same multiband antenna. The aim of the present article is to review the antenna solutions used in the automotive markets, providing a literature and a product overview with indications of future trends.

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Compact Wideband Vivaldi Monopole for LTE Mobile Communications

A novel compact broadband monopole antenna inspired by a Vivaldi antenna is presented. In order to get a compact solution, the profile of a slot Vivaldi antenna has been modified and a wideband antenna covering LTE700, GSM850, GSM900, DCS1800, PCS1900, WCDMA2100, Bluetooth, WiMAX2350, WLAN2400, and LTE2600 standards has been obtained, with a size reduction length of 30% over conventional λ/4 monopole antennas. In contrast to traditional designs using Vivaldi antennas, a compact design with omnidirectional radiation pattern is proposed. Simulated and measured results are provided, which verify the broadband behavior of the antenna. In addition, the proposed design is perpendicularly mounted to a ground plane, being then suitable for mobile communications in vehicular applications

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Performance evaluation of C2C antennas on car body

This paper presents measurements of two low-cost C2C (Car-to-Car) antennas integrated within a car roof-top module. A GPS patch and a LTE element are also included in the antenna. The integration of these functionalities in a limited space made the design of the antennas particularly challenging. The achieved structure is low profile and can be easily installed in any car roof maintaining its aesthetics. The measurements, performed with the use of the Calearo NF site provided by Satimo, have been carried out by mounting the structure on a car roof. The main results are here presented.

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Design and measurement of automotive antennas for C2C applications

Among the emerging wireless technologies, C2C communication has received considerable attention in the world because this technology promises to improve road safety and travel comfort. In this paper we present two C2C antennas that can be easily integrated into a conventional rooftop antenna module that includes also an element for GSM and UMTS services. The C2C antennas are a printed monopole and short circuited patch working at the TM01 mode. Antenna characteristics are investigated by S parameters and pattern measurements.

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Printed Wideband Antenna for LTE-Band Automotive Applications

A low-profile printed antenna is proposed here for vehicular communications, covering wireless standards in a wide frequency range (698-2690 MHz) that includes the Long Term Evolution band. Multiple monopole antennas are printed on the same compact substrate, easily embeddable under a shark-fin cover, and they are properly optimized to resonate in the considered frequency band. A tapered profile and a thin slot have been introduced to achieve a good impedance matching, especially at the higher frequencies. Numerical simulations and measurement results on a prototype are reported here in terms of reflection coefficient, gain, and radiation pattern. The proposed wideband antenna is suitable for other wireless scenarios in addition to the automotive industry.

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Wideband Double Monopole for Mobile, WLAN, and C2C Services in Vehicular Applications

In this letter, a three-dimensional antenna solution for automotive applications is presented. The proposed solution is formed by two independent antennas, perpendicularly placed inside a plastic cover with a shark-fin shape. The antennas, designed with low-cost materials, exhibit omnidirectional radiation patterns in the azimuthal plane. The first antenna is a double-shorted monopole that provides service from 698 to 960 MHz (in the LTE700, GSM850, and GSM900 bands), whereas the second antenna is a drop-shaped monopole that operates from 1.7 to 2.7 GHz (in the DCS1800, PCS1900, WCDMA2100, WLAN2400, LTE2600, WiMAX2350, and Wi-Fi at 2.4-GHz bands), and from 5.1 to 6 GHz (in the Wi-Fi at 5 GHz and C2C bands). Results show a good matching and radiation efficiency at all bands.

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