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e-tenna Corporation

Thu, 04/19/2001 - 12:33pm

An Emerging Business of The Titan Corporation

The steady stream of innovation in the personal wireless communications market, from cell phones and wireless PDAs to handheld GPS navigators and wireless local area networks, has created a compelling need for a new generation of antennas — antennas that perform well in the presence of scattering and absorbing objects, including the human body.

As a result, accurate measurement of antenna electrical performance ranks high among the challenges facing antenna, microwave and communication system engineers. There are numerous issues involved in getting accurate, repeatable radiation patterns and gain measurements of low frequency broad-beam antennas. For example, when these antennas are used near scattering and/or absorbing objects — such as the human body — the presence of such objects produces electrical performance that differs significantly from theoretical predictions and laboratory measurements. Clearly, innovative techniques are needed to support the developers' need for faster, more accurate measurements and the manufacturers' need to hit market windows within price/performance constraints.

Company Background
In response to such challenges, the Antenna Measurement & Evaluation Services division of e-tenna™ Corporation (http://www.antennatesting.com) has recently initiated a unique new service that underscores the company's commitment to support the rapid design and deployment of next generation antennas. e-tenna is a development stage startup that was formed last year as an emerging business of The Titan Corporation (NYSE: TTN, http://www.titan.com). Customers choose e-tenna because its service is first to combine access to a state-of-the-art STARGATE64™ measurement system with unmatched onsite technical support. In fact, the experience of e-tenna's engineering team represents well over a century in the design and development of advanced antenna technologies.

Company Services
The availability of e-tenna's new service represents a significant step forward in affordable access to the accurate, reliable and cost-effective antenna testing services that will help shape and accelerate the development of new, advanced antenna designs. Key to e-tenna's unique services is a relationship with Satimo, inventors and producers of the STARGATE64 system, which is based on the patented Modulated Scattering Technique (MST). Through the use of a static probe array, MST enables very rapid antenna measurements, with a dynamic range of more than 70 dB and electronic inter-switching speeds of 2,000 Hz to 20,000 Hz. Using MST, measurement times for scanning large areas or volumes are reduced by a factor ranging from 60 to 1,000, as compared to results with a conventional far field antenna range using mechanical scanning.

Testing Service
The e-tenna testing service offers a comprehensive test suite, including measurement of radiation patterns, average gain, antenna efficiency, and human body interaction effects. The facility's primary operating frequency range is from 0.400 GHz to 6 GHz, but can be configured for testing up to 40 GHz. Accuracy of peak gain measurements are ± 1.0 dB from 400 MHz to 800 MHz, ± 0.6 dB from 800 MHz to 1 GHz and ± 0.5 dB from 1 GHz to 6 GHz. The maximum diameter of the object (antenna) that can be tested in the facility is 1.7 m @ 800 MHz, 2.4 m @ 1.5 GHz, and 1.1 m @ 3.2 GHz, and 0.5 m @ 6 GHz. Full-size human test subjects of up to 110 kg can be tested.

Data generated during test sessions can be presented in many forms. The data analysis and reduction software supports a wide range of outputs, including full 3D radiation patterns, conventional 2D radiation patterns, and swept gain and efficiency. In addition, ASCII data files are produced that are easily processed by third party analysis tools such as MATLAB®, MathCAD®, and EXCEL®.

Onsite Services
Onsite services include support from a highly trained, skilled test technician who installs the antenna under test, operates the data acquisition test equipment, and manages the data analysis and reduction software for each testing session. An experienced test engineer provides technical guidance on test configuration and data interpretation. Engineers from the e-tenna team, which includes recognized experts in the field of antenna design and RF technology, are available to discuss and troubleshoot customers' special needs. In addition, we are extremely sensitive to the value of our customers' antenna design and test information and will execute non-disclosure agreements with our customers to define data handling and safeguarding requirements.

Our new, state-of-the-art range is now available for scheduling antenna measurement and evaluation services. Contact us today to learn more about this exciting new service, and to schedule range time.

e-tenna Corporation
6100 Frost Place
Suite C
Laurel, Maryland 20707
Tel: (240) 456-4115
Email: info@antennatesting.com
www.antennatesting.com

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