Table of Contents
ISRN Communications and Networking
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 132465, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/132465
Research Article

A Systematic Approach for the Design, Fabrication, and Testing of Microstrip Antennas Using Inkjet Printing Technology

1Department of Applied Science, College of Science and Mathematics, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock, AR 72204-1099, USA
2Department of Systems Engineering, George W. Donaghey College of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock, AR 72204-1099, USA

Received 8 February 2012; Accepted 4 April 2012

Academic Editors: C. Luxey, J. Park, H. M. Sun, and K. Teh

Copyright © 2012 Yahiea Al-Naiemy et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

We present a systematic approach for producing microstrip antennas using the state-of-the-art-inkjet printing technique. An initial antenna design based on the conventional square patch geometry is adopted as a benchmark to characterize the entire approach; the procedure then could be generalized to different antenna geometries and feeding techniques. For validation purposes, the antenna is designed and simulated using two different 3D full-wave electromagnetic simulation tools: Ansoft’s High Frequency Structure Simulator (HFSS), which is based on the Finite Element Method (FEM), and CST Microwave Studio, which is based on the Finite Integration Technique (FIT). The systematic approach for the fabrication process includes the optimal number of printed layers, curing temperature, and curing time. These essential parameters need to be optimized to achieve the highest electrical conductivity, trace continuity, and structural robustness. The antenna is fabricated using Inkjet Printing Technology (IJPT) utilizing Sliver Nanoparticles (SNPs) conductive ink printed by DMP-2800 Dimatix FujiFilm materials printer.