Satellite Antenna on a Chip

Flat satellite antennas using an array of phased antenna elements are not new, but their complexity and cost usually limits their use to specialized applications. Research by Marcel van de Burgwal at the Centre for Telematics and Information Technology at the University of Twente could make this technology affordable for consumer electronics.

The University of Twente news release is short on technical detail, focusing on the use of processors in a software defined radio configuration to replace analog components to provide the necessary processing. Much more detail is available in Marcel van de Burgawal's Doctoral Thesis. This describes the circuitry and networking architecture between "tile processors" used to process the signals. While much of the thesis is devoted to describing the tile processors and how they're networked, it also details applications for processing individual RF streams. The use of an example of the technology in phased array receivers using a DVB-S satellite antenna and receiver is also described in detail.

Van de Burgwal's technology--if it can be built inexpensively--could lead to major breakthroughs in receivers and antennas design.

Doug Lung

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. As vice president of Broadcast Technology for NBCUniversal Local, H. Douglas Lung leads NBC and Telemundo-owned stations’ RF and transmission affairs, including microwave, radars, satellite uplinks, and FCC technical filings. Beginning his career in 1976 at KSCI in Los Angeles, Lung has nearly 50 years of experience in broadcast television engineering. Beginning in 1985, he led the engineering department for what was to become the Telemundo network and station group, assisting in the design, construction and installation of the company’s broadcast and cable facilities. Other projects include work on the launch of Hawaii’s first UHF TV station, the rollout and testing of the ATSC mobile-handheld standard, and software development related to the incentive auction TV spectrum repack.
A longtime columnist for TV Technology, Doug is also a regular contributor to IEEE Broadcast Technology. He is the recipient of the 2023 NAB Television Engineering Award. He also received a Tech Leadership Award from TV Tech publisher Future plc in 2021 and is a member of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society and the Society of Broadcast Engineers.