Date of Award

Winter 2021

Project Type


Program or Major

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Michael J Carter

Second Advisor

Kent A Chamberlin

Third Advisor

Nicholas J Kirsch


Wireless communication is an integral part of safety at sea. Direct broadcasts from public weather satellites on L- and X-band provide real-time weather observations and weather product dissemination to end users. These high-bandwidth broadcasts offer enhanced data throughput and require accurate pointing of high-gain antennas.

An electronically-steered array antenna can provide high gain and rapid beam steering without moving parts, suitable for deployment on small vessels offshore. Figures of merit, such as array antenna gain and input impedance, vary with the beam steering angle as a consequence of mutual coupling between array elements. The electromagnetic design of an electronically-steered array antenna is more complex than a parabolic dish or a fixed broadside array, requiring an iterative development process and a computationally efficient method of simulating the array.

This work addresses the validation of an efficient method for array simulation, a necessary first step in the design process of a deployable array. Starting with a small L-band subarray, a Fourier windowing method is applied to approximate the scan-dependent behavior of an electronically-steered array from an efficient numerical model in a periodic unit cell. Results are validated against experimental measurements of hardware prototypes and explicit numerical models of the subarray. The iterative design of antenna elements in an array environment and construction of a full-size array are left for future work.