Designing Optimal Surface Currents for Efficient On-Chip mm-Wave Radiators with Active Circuitry

Kaushik Sengupta, Ali Hajimiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Integrated antennas have become the attractive solution as the electromagnetic (EM) interface for mm-Wave and terahertz ICs. However, on-chip antennas lying at the interface between two different dielectrics (such as air and substrate) can channel most of its power into multiple nonradiative surface-wave modes, reducing efficiency drastically. In this paper, we consider the following problem: given a dielectric substrate, what is the theoretical optimal 2-D surface-current configuration that collectively suppresses surface waves and maximizes radiation efficiency with the desirable radiation pattern? This paper also discusses demonstrative examples of a circuit-EM codesign approach to realize the approximation of such current configurations. Measurement results of radiating arrays in CMOS at mm-Wave frequencies (250-300 GHz) are presented and compared with theoretical predictions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7491288
Pages (from-to)1976-1988
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Beamforming
  • CMOS
  • EIRP
  • distributed active radiation
  • near field
  • on-chip antenna
  • power combining
  • power generation
  • radiation
  • substrate modes
  • terahertz (THz)


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