The development of high frequency components and sub-systems has a driving market determined by many possible utilizations of the microwave and millimeter wave signal processing, encompassing civilian and military applications. The growing demand is on components and sub-systems having smaller size, low power consumption and re-configurability, to fulfil requirements on the flexibility in satellite constellations and RADAR wideband installations. Software Defined Radios (SDR) require filter benches and/or agility in frequency switching and multi-band response. Moreover, space components need a full understanding of their compatibility with temperature and radiation hardness problems.
This activity is focused mainly on components and sub-systems like filters, resonators, oscillators and antennas. More specifically, current objects of this research are: (i) SMART configurations, involving hybrid or integrated technologies, with an elevated number of functions and components, suitable also for Internet Of Things (IOT) applications, and (ii) structures based on metamaterial approaches, to optimize both the size of the component and its electromagnetic performances.
For the above reasons, we can underline the following general goals:
1. Design and realization of innovative components, for which until now no software solution exists for the full design, especially when different and/or combined solicitations are involved. For this purpose, a multi-physics approach is pursued in parallel with commercial electro-magnetic software and with equivalent circuit models composed by lumped and/or distributed elements. These models should be easily implemented in the CAD software packages widely used by high frequency designers.
2. Electro-Magnetic Interference (EMI) analysis, including packaging in the device design and development, to minimize cut and try approaches for the final component.
3. Additional analysis for special conditions, like power handling, temperature and radiation hardness.
4. Basic study of microwave photonic applications, currently envisaged for non-dispersive, tunable and wideband components based on the high frequency generation by means of mixed phase locked photonic sources.
5. Definition of reliability protocols as a function of the application, for ground as well as for space components, for on-wafer and packaged devices.
TRL=4 can be obtained for the most part of the studied configurations.
Ongoing Project: METAmaterial inspired RF Microsystems tunable by RF-MEMS