Title:
Patch antenna characterization in a high-voltage corona plasma

Thumbnail Image
Author(s)
Morys, Marcin M.
Authors
Advisor(s)
Durgin, Gregory D.
Advisor(s)
Editor(s)
Associated Organization(s)
Series
Supplementary to
Abstract
In order to improve efficiency and reliability of the world's power grids, sensors are being deployed for constant status monitoring. Placing inexpensive wireless sensors on high-voltage power lines presents a new challenge to the RF engineer. Large electric field intensities can exist around a wireless sensor antenna on a high-voltage power line, leading to the formation of a corona plasma. A corona plasma is a partially ionized volume of air formed through energetic electron-molecule collisions mediated by a strong electric field. This corona can contain large densities of free electrons which act as a conducting medium, absorbing RF energy and detuning the sensor's antenna. Through the use of low-profile antennas and rounded geometries, the possibility for corona formation on the antenna surface is greatly reduced, as compared with wire antennas. This study looks at the effects of a corona plasma on a patch antenna, which could be used in a power line sensor. The corona's behavior in the presence of an electromagnetic plane wave is analyzed mathematically to understand the dependence of attenuation on frequency and electron density. A Drude model is used to convert plasma parameters such as electron density and collision frequency to a complex permittivity that can be incorporated in antenna simulations. Using CST Microwave Studio, a 5.8 GHz patch antenna is simulated with a plasma material on its surface, of varying densities and thicknesses. Power absorption by the plasma dominates the power loss, as opposed to detuning. A wideband patch is simulated to show that the detuning effects by the plasma can be further reduced. Power absorption by the plasma is significant for electron densities greater than 10¹⁸ m⁻³. However, small point corona are found to have little effect on antenna radiation.
Sponsor
Date Issued
2013-11-07
Extent
Resource Type
Text
Resource Subtype
Thesis
Rights Statement
Rights URI