Grant: Full-Duplex Wireless Antenna Design for Amateur Bands

Date: May 2023
Amount: $99,562

The Portland State University (PSU) Foundation, established in 1963, raises and manages private resources to support the mission and goals of PSU, advancing the university through philanthropy, relationships, and community connections. A group in PSU’s Department of Computer Science investigates methods to enable full-duplex (FD) wireless by minimizing self-interference (SI), the biggest barrier to FD. Previously, they have accomplished the reduction of SI by designing antennas for the 28 GHz mmWave bands. However, no prior work has been conducted in the sub-6 GHz bands to reduce SI, bands with characteristics that fundamentally differ from mmWave bands. Utilizing FD in the sub-6 GHz band could have merit for users below 1 GHz, as FD would double the spectral efficiency in regions where wireless bandwidth is not as accessible.

This grant will provide funding for investigating the performance of FD wireless in the UHF section of the amateur radio band (420 – 450 MHz). They will set out to do this by designing low cost, easy to manufacture FD antennas as a stepping stone toward ultimately building low cost, lower frequency FD radios. Antenna performance will be characterized via over-the-air measurements in an anechoic chamber and high frequency software structure (HFSS) simulations. Further, they plan to demo the above project at the annual Oregon MESA demo day to invoke awareness and interest in amateur radio communications to the local area middle and high school students. As a result of this research, the scope of utilizing FD wireless would be expanded beyond the mmWave bands, narrowing the digital divide between users in urban and rural areas.

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