RF & Microwave Electronics

Access our comprehensive library of technical briefs on RF & microwave electronics, from engineering experts at NASA and major government, university, and commercial laboratories.

In the middle ground between microwaves and visible light lies terahertz radiation, and the promise of “Tray vision.”
The sensor makes it easier to detect and manage ice accumulation on aircraft wings.
The technology could enable remote control of drug delivery, sensing, and other medical applications.
Fiber-optic cables could help scientists study offshore earthquakes and the geologic structures hidden deep beneath the ocean surface.
This atom-based receiver has the potential to be smaller and work better in noisy environments than conventional radio receivers.
In some cases, radio frequency signals may be more useful for caregivers than cameras or other methods to collect health and behavioral data.
Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Wraparound Self-Structuring Leaky-Wave Antenna (WSS-LWA)
This system has applications in the smart grid and military.
The flat structure morphs into another shape when temperature changes, enabling self-deploying tents or adaptive robotic fins.
This technique lowers airstream noise generated at the side edges of deployed flaps, elevons, or slats.
These stickers wirelessly beam health readings to a receiver clipped onto clothing.
Briefs : Motion Control
Robot Performs Complex Maneuvers
An upgraded mini robot can leap over obstacles with ease.
A nanoantenna-enabled detector boosts the usable signal of a thermal infrared camera by up to three times.
This electronic pill can relay diagnostic information or release drugs in response to smartphone commands.
A technology uses a combination of WiFi signals and accelerometer technology to track devices in near-real-time.

Radar technologies were originally designed to identify and track airborne military targets. Today, they're more often used to detect motor vehicles, weather formations,...

Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Enhanced Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Reader
The reader uses a frequency multiplexer to boost its ability to accurately locate a greater number of RFID tags.
RFID-based devices work in indoor and outdoor lighting conditions and could transmit data for years before they need to be replaced.

A novel approach was developed to improve communications range and allow for covert behavior using a team of robots for future multi-domain operations. Specifically, researchers...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Battery-Free Sensor for Underwater Use

To investigate oceans, researchers aim to build a submerged network of interconnected sensors that sends data to the surface. Supplying constant power to scores of sensors designed to stay for long...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Passive Smart Container

Although Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology is being used widely for pallet and box-level tracking in the commercial sector, significant technology gaps remain for tracking dense quantities at the item...

Contact lenses that can monitor the wearer’s health and correct eyesight use embedded electronics. These, and other curved devices such as solar cells and electronics, could be...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Wireless Transceiver Quadruples Speed of 5G

A new wireless transceiver was developed that boosts radio frequencies into 100-gigahertz territory, which is quadruple the speed of the upcoming 5G, or fifth-generation, wireless communications...

Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Technique Locates Robots and Humans in GPS-Challenged Environments

An algorithm enables localization of humans and robots in areas where GPS is unavailable. The Army needs to be able to localize agents operating in physically complex, unknown, and infrastructure-poor environments. This capability is critical to help find dismounted soldiers and...

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses magnetic fields and radio waves to create images of organs and tissues in the human body, helping doctors diagnose potential problems or diseases. Doctors use MRI to...

Briefs : Imaging
Antenna Near-Field Probe Station Scanner

Antenna characterization techniques are often expensive and time-consuming. NASA’s Glenn Research Center developed a highly versatile and automated system to perform characterization of single or multiple small circuit antennas, printed on-wafer or on other substrates, by measuring the antenna’s...

Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Self-Configurable Radio Receiver System and Method

A self-configurable radio receiver system was developed for relaying communication signals from multiple deep space assets. Most conventional radio receivers are hardwired to receive a specific type of signal and are incapable of receiving other types of signals without preconfiguration...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Terahertz Data Links Without Direct Line of Sight

Today’s cellular networks and Wi-Fi systems rely on microwave radiation to carry data but the demand for more bandwidth is quickly becoming more than microwaves can handle. That has...

Since 1998, almost 2,000 shoebox-sized satellites known as CubeSats have been launched into space. Due to their small frame and the fact that they can be made from off-the-shelf...

Scientists of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and École Poly-technique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) have reported that they achieved the fastest distance measurement attained so...

Briefs : Aerospace
Multi- and Wide-Band Single-Feed Patch Antenna

A novel patch antenna technology was developed that provides significant benefits to NASA satellite communication applications, offering a unique wide-band/multi-band operating capability. For other non-space applications, the antenna design also offers broadband capability with high gain for...

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