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Electromagnetic characterisation of textile materials for the design of wearable antennas and systems

Electromagnetic characterisation of textile materials for the design of wearable antennas and systems

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The accurate characterisation of textile materials to be used as a dielectric substrate in wearable systems is fundamental. However, little information can be found on the electromagnetic properties of regular textiles. Woven, knits and non-wovens are inhomogeneous, highly porous, compressible and easily influenced by the environmental hygrometric conditions, making their electromagnetic characterisation difficult. For these reasons, there is no standard method to measure the dielectric properties of textiles. This chapter presents a survey on the evolution of flexible antennas and the textile materials used to manufacture them. Besides, it gives an overview of several methods used to characterise the permittivity of textile materials. Furthermore, it presents and applies a resonator-based experimental technique to characterise textile materials. This experimental technique is based on the theory of resonant methods and consists in calculating the electromagnetic parameters of the material under test (MUT), at a single frequency, by measuring the shift in frequency and the value of Q-factor of one resonator board with a microstrip patch antenna. To validate the experimental characterisation method, four textile antennas have been designed to resonate in the 2.45 GHz ISM band. This bandwidth (BW) also supports the Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN), Bluetooth and Short Range Communication Systems (SRCS) applications. All antennas operated in the targeted frequency band and showed excellent agreement between simulated and measured parameters, supporting the validation of this method. The resonator-based experimental technique proved to be an efficient, simple, easy and fast technique for the characterisation of electromagnetic propertiesof textile materials for the development of wearable antennas and body-centric communication.

Chapter Contents:

  • 5.1 Introduction
  • 5.2 Textile materials for the design of wearable antennas
  • 5.2.1 Electromagnetic properties of materials
  • 5.2.1.1 Conductive materials
  • 5.2.1.2 Dielectric materials
  • 5.2.2 Brief survey on textile materials used in wearable antennas
  • 5.3 Methods for the electromagnetic characterisation of dielectric textiles
  • 5.3.1 Non-resonant methods
  • 5.3.1.1 Parallel plate method
  • 5.3.1.2 Planar transmission lines methods
  • 5.3.1.3 Free space methods
  • 5.3.2 Resonant methods
  • 5.3.2.1 Cavity perturbation methods
  • 5.3.2.2 Microstrip ring resonator method
  • 5.3.2.3 Microstrip patch sensor
  • 5.3.2.4 Microstrip patch radiator method
  • 5.3.2.5 Agilent 85070E dielectric measurement probe kit
  • 5.4 Resonator-based experimental technique
  • 5.4.1 Experimental procedure
  • 5.4.2 Measurement results
  • 5.4.3 Discussion of the results
  • 5.4.4 Validation of the method
  • 5.5 Conclusions
  • Acknowledgements
  • References

Inspec keywords: microstrip antennas; wearable antennas; permittivity; Bluetooth; dielectric materials; microstrip resonators; textile products; wireless LAN

Other keywords: material under test; textile materials; Bluetooth; electromagnetic characterisation; electromagnetic properties; textile antennas; Q-factor; short range communication systems; dielectric substrate; body-centric communication; wearable antennas; frequency 2.45 GHz; resonator-based experimental technique; experimental characterisation method; wireless local area network; microstrip patch antenna; regular textiles

Subjects: Dielectric materials and properties; Radio links and equipment; Waveguide and microwave transmission line components; Single antennas

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