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Pager users will soon be able to say goodbye to bulky antennas. Leti, a CEA Tech institute, recently helped TPL Systèmes make its antennas more compact and boost performance.
TPL Systèmes, one of France’s leading
manufacturers of radio communications systems for emergency response and
industrial applications, came to Leti with a particularly challenging project:
to make the company’s pager antennas smaller and more practical for users without
sacrificing performance. Plus, Leti had to maintain the current two
communication standards (400 MHz TETRA and 900/1800MHz GSM/DCS) in the same
device without changing the existing terminal’s form factor.
Leti researchers started by developing a
custom RF-optical measurement bench for ultra-miniaturized antennas. None of
the subsequent development work would have been possible without this truly
exceptional piece of equipment, which came in the form of a very large anechoic
chamber enabling extremely accurate measurements of antenna properties at
relatively low frequency.
Next, the researchers developed a flexible,
reconfigurable 400 MHz TETRA antenna designed to make the best use of the
available space and a 900/1800MHz GSM/DCS antenna, optimizing integration with
regard to the TETRA antenna. They also developed electronics to easily switch
from one TETRA subband to another.
The new antenna performs twice as well as
the previous version and offers a much smaller form factor. The development won
an award in 2014 from FIEEC, France’s electrical, electronics, and
communications industry federation.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.