A Monolithically Integrable Reconfigurable Antenna Based on Large-Area Electronics

Can Wu, Yue Ma, Suresh Venkatesh, Yoni Mehlman, Murat Ozatay, Sigurd Wagner, James C. Sturm, Naveen Verma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Reconfigurable antennas introduce unique and dynamic system capabilities for wireless communication and sensing, by enabling controllable radiation pattern, frequency response, and polarization of electromagnetic (EM) waves. The antenna&#x2019;s physical dimensions are critical to enhancing control of radiative characteristics, making it necessary to distribute RF control devices across a large-area aperture. Previous reconfigurable antennas have been limited in scale and performance by the need to assemble discrete active components. Large-area electronics (LAE) is a technology that can enable monolithic reconfigurable antennas, with flexible and large form factors. However, conventionally the speed of LAE, specifically of thin-film transistors (TFTs), has been restricted to 10&#x2013;100 MHz. In this work, a reconfigurable antenna based on LAE RF TFTs is achieved through a combination of: 1) materials and device enhancements pushing fundamental TFT performance metrics to the giga-Hertz regime and 2) an architecture that employs the TFTs as passive switches, rather than active amplifiers, to enable aggressive biasing for high-frequency operation, yet within the breakdown limits. A 9 <inline-formula> <tex-math notation="LaTeX">$\times$</tex-math> </inline-formula> 9 cm<inline-formula> <tex-math notation="LaTeX">$^2$</tex-math> </inline-formula> reconfigurable antenna consisting of an 11 <inline-formula> <tex-math notation="LaTeX">$\times$</tex-math> </inline-formula> 11 array of metal patches as sub-radiators controlled by 208 TFT-based RF switches is demonstrated. Far-field and <inline-formula> <tex-math notation="LaTeX">$S$</tex-math> </inline-formula>-parameter measurements show reconfigured beam steering by 90<inline-formula> <tex-math notation="LaTeX">$^{\circ}$</tex-math> </inline-formula> and resonant-frequency tuning by 200 MHz.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Antennas
  • Impedance
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Logic gates
  • Metals
  • Radio frequency
  • Switches
  • Thin film transistors
  • large-area electronics (LAE)
  • reconfigurable antenna
  • thin-film transistor (TFT)
  • wireless sensing


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