University of Bath

PhD Student Designs Antenna Array for Locating GPS Interference

 

Company

The University of Bath in Bath, United Kingdom, received its royal charter in 1966 and is now a top 10 UK university with a reputation for research and teaching excellence. The university’s mission is to educate its students to become future leaders and innovators, benefiting the wider population through research, enterprise, and influence. University of Bath specializes in electronic and electrical engineering research.

Challenge

Global positioning systems (GPS) are ubiquitous in modern life, but unfortunately, the high frequency and low power of GPS signals, which makes them so cost effective and therefore prevalent, also renders them easy prey for low-cost “privacy protection devices,” or signal jammers, that enable the avoidance of GPS tracking. Many applications are being developed to locate these signal jammers that are the source of GPS interference, but most methods for locating RF emitters require large systems with high-power consumption. In order to build a lower-power system capable of finding emitters based solely on the power in the signal, a suitable antenna must be designed. 

Solution

Elizabeth Lloyd, PhD student at University of Bath, chose the NI AWR Design Environment platform for her design, specifically Microwave Office circuit design software, which provided both the AXIEM planar method-of-moments (MoM) and Analyst™ 3D finite-element method (FEM) EM solvers needed for her array composed of two planar antennas and a third 3D antenna. 

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