US20040233112A1 - Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites - Google Patents

Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites Download PDF

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Publication number
US20040233112A1
US20040233112A1 US10877092 US87709204A US2004233112A1 US 20040233112 A1 US20040233112 A1 US 20040233112A1 US 10877092 US10877092 US 10877092 US 87709204 A US87709204 A US 87709204A US 2004233112 A1 US2004233112 A1 US 2004233112A1
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Prior art keywords
conductive
resin
based material
loaded resin
conductive loaded
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Abandoned
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US10877092
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Thomas Aisenbrey
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Integral Technologies Inc
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Integral Technologies Inc
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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B29WORKING OF PLASTICS; WORKING OF SUBSTANCES IN A PLASTIC STATE, IN GENERAL
    • B29CSHAPING OR JOINING OF PLASTICS; SHAPING OF MATERIAL IN A PLASTIC STATE, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR; AFTER-TREATMENT OF THE SHAPED PRODUCTS, e.g. REPAIRING
    • B29C45/00Injection moulding, i.e. forcing the required volume of moulding material through a nozzle into a closed mould; Apparatus therefor
    • B29C45/0013Injection moulding, i.e. forcing the required volume of moulding material through a nozzle into a closed mould; Apparatus therefor using fillers dispersed in the moulding material, e.g. metal particles
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06KRECOGNITION OF DATA; PRESENTATION OF DATA; RECORD CARRIERS; HANDLING RECORD CARRIERS
    • G06K19/00Record carriers for use with machines and with at least a part designed to carry digital markings
    • G06K19/06Record carriers for use with machines and with at least a part designed to carry digital markings characterised by the kind of the digital marking, e.g. shape, nature, code
    • G06K19/067Record carriers with conductive marks, printed circuits or semiconductor circuit elements, e.g. credit or identity cards also with resonating or responding marks without active components
    • G06K19/07Record carriers with conductive marks, printed circuits or semiconductor circuit elements, e.g. credit or identity cards also with resonating or responding marks without active components with integrated circuit chips
    • G06K19/077Constructional details, e.g. mounting of circuits in the carrier
    • G06K19/07749Constructional details, e.g. mounting of circuits in the carrier the record carrier being capable of non-contact communication, e.g. constructional details of the antenna of a non-contact smart card
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q1/00Details of, or arrangements associated with, antennas
    • H01Q1/12Supports; Mounting means
    • H01Q1/1271Supports; Mounting means for mounting on windscreens
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q1/00Details of, or arrangements associated with, antennas
    • H01Q1/36Structural form of radiating elements, e.g. cone, spiral, umbrella; Particular materials used therewith
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q1/00Details of, or arrangements associated with, antennas
    • H01Q1/36Structural form of radiating elements, e.g. cone, spiral, umbrella; Particular materials used therewith
    • H01Q1/38Structural form of radiating elements, e.g. cone, spiral, umbrella; Particular materials used therewith formed by a conductive layer on an insulating support
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q1/00Details of, or arrangements associated with, antennas
    • H01Q1/40Radiating elements coated with or embedded in protective material
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q9/00Electrically-short antennas having dimensions not more than twice the operating wavelength and consisting of conductive active radiating elements
    • H01Q9/04Resonant antennas
    • H01Q9/0407Substantially flat resonant element parallel to ground plane, e.g. patch antenna
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q9/00Electrically-short antennas having dimensions not more than twice the operating wavelength and consisting of conductive active radiating elements
    • H01Q9/04Resonant antennas
    • H01Q9/16Resonant antennas with feed intermediate between the extremities of the antenna, e.g. centre-fed dipole
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01QANTENNAS, i.e. RADIO AERIALS
    • H01Q9/00Electrically-short antennas having dimensions not more than twice the operating wavelength and consisting of conductive active radiating elements
    • H01Q9/04Resonant antennas
    • H01Q9/30Resonant antennas with feed to end of elongated active element, e.g. unipole
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K3/00Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits
    • H05K3/10Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits in which conductive material is applied to the insulating support in such a manner as to form the desired conductive pattern
    • H05K3/101Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits in which conductive material is applied to the insulating support in such a manner as to form the desired conductive pattern by casting or moulding of conductive material
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B29WORKING OF PLASTICS; WORKING OF SUBSTANCES IN A PLASTIC STATE, IN GENERAL
    • B29CSHAPING OR JOINING OF PLASTICS; SHAPING OF MATERIAL IN A PLASTIC STATE, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR; AFTER-TREATMENT OF THE SHAPED PRODUCTS, e.g. REPAIRING
    • B29C45/00Injection moulding, i.e. forcing the required volume of moulding material through a nozzle into a closed mould; Apparatus therefor
    • B29C45/0001Injection moulding, i.e. forcing the required volume of moulding material through a nozzle into a closed mould; Apparatus therefor characterised by the choice of material
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B29WORKING OF PLASTICS; WORKING OF SUBSTANCES IN A PLASTIC STATE, IN GENERAL
    • B29KINDEXING SCHEME ASSOCIATED WITH SUBCLASSES B29B, B29C OR B29D, RELATING TO MOULDING MATERIALS
    • B29K2995/00Properties of moulding materials, reinforcements, fillers, preformed parts or moulds
    • B29K2995/0003Properties of moulding materials, reinforcements, fillers, preformed parts or moulds having particular electrical or magnetic properties, e.g. piezoelectric
    • B29K2995/0005Conductive
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B29WORKING OF PLASTICS; WORKING OF SUBSTANCES IN A PLASTIC STATE, IN GENERAL
    • B29LINDEXING SCHEME ASSOCIATED WITH SUBCLASS B29C, RELATING TO PARTICULAR ARTICLES
    • B29L2031/00Other particular articles
    • B29L2031/34Electrical apparatus, e.g. sparking plugs or parts thereof
    • B29L2031/3456Antennas, e.g. radomes
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K1/00Printed circuits
    • H05K1/02Details
    • H05K1/09Use of materials for the metallic pattern or other conductive pattern
    • H05K1/092Dispersed materials, e.g. conductive pastes or inks
    • H05K1/095Dispersed materials, e.g. conductive pastes or inks for polymer thick films, i.e. having a permanent organic polymeric binder
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K2201/00Indexing scheme relating to printed circuits covered by H05K1/00
    • H05K2201/02Fillers; Particles; Fibers; Reinforcement materials
    • H05K2201/0275Fibers and reinforcement materials
    • H05K2201/0281Conductive fibers
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K2201/00Indexing scheme relating to printed circuits covered by H05K1/00
    • H05K2201/09Shape and layout
    • H05K2201/09009Substrate related
    • H05K2201/09118Moulded substrate
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K2203/00Indexing scheme relating to apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits covered by H05K3/00
    • H05K2203/01Tools for processing; Objects used during processing
    • H05K2203/0104Tools for processing; Objects used during processing for patterning or coating
    • H05K2203/0113Female die used for patterning or transferring, e.g. temporary substrate having recessed pattern
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H05ELECTRIC TECHNIQUES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H05KPRINTED CIRCUITS; CASINGS OR CONSTRUCTIONAL DETAILS OF ELECTRIC APPARATUS; MANUFACTURE OF ASSEMBLAGES OF ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
    • H05K3/00Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits
    • H05K3/10Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits in which conductive material is applied to the insulating support in such a manner as to form the desired conductive pattern
    • H05K3/107Apparatus or processes for manufacturing printed circuits in which conductive material is applied to the insulating support in such a manner as to form the desired conductive pattern by filling grooves in the support with conductive material

Abstract

Low cost antennas formed of a conductive loaded resin-based material. The conductive loaded resin-based material comprises conductor fibers or conductor particles in a resin or plastic host wherein the ratio of the weight of the conductor fibers or conductor particles to the weight of the resin or plastic host is between about 0.20 and 0.40. The conductive fibers can be stainless steel, nickel, copper, silver, or the like. The antenna elements can be formed using methods such as injection molding or extrusion. Virtually any antenna fabricated by conventional means such as wire, strip-line, printed circuit boards, or the like can be fabricated using the conductive loaded resin-based materials. The conductive loaded resin-based material used to form the antenna elements can be in the form of a thin flexible woven fabric which can readily cut to the desired shape.

Description

  • This patent application is a Continuation In Part of application Ser. No. 10/075,778, filed Feb. 14, 2002.[0001]
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • (1) Field of the Invention [0002]
  • This invention relates to antennas formed of conductive loaded resin-based materials comprising micron conductive powders or micron conductive fibers. [0003]
  • (2) Description of the Related Art [0004]
  • Antennas are an essential part of electronic communication systems that contain wireless links. Low cost antennas offer significant advantages for these systems. [0005]
  • U.S. Pat. No. 5,771,027 to Marks et al. describes a composite antenna having a grid comprised of electrical conductors woven into the warp of a resin reinforced cloth forming one layer of a multi-layer laminate structure of an antenna. [0006]
  • U.S. Pat. No. 6,249,261 B1 to Solberg, Jr. et al. describes a direction-finding material constructed from polymer composite materials which are electrically conductive. [0007]
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • Antennas are essential in any electronic systems containing wireless links. Such applications as communications and navigation require reliable sensitive antennas. Antennas are typically fabricated from metal antenna elements in a wide variety of configurations. Lowering the cost of antenna materials or production costs in fabrication of antennas offers significant advantages for any applications utilizing antennas. [0008]
  • It is a principle objective of this invention to provide antennas fabricated from conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0009]
  • It is another principle objective of this invention to provide antennas having two antenna elements fabricated from conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0010]
  • It is another principle objective of this invention to provide antennas having an antenna element and a ground plane fabricated from conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0011]
  • It is another principle objective of this invention to provide a method of forming antennas from conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0012]
  • These objectives are achieved by fabricating the antenna elements and ground planes from conductive loaded resin-based materials. These materials are resins loaded with conductive materials to provide a resin-based material which is a conductor rather than an insulator. The resins provide the structural material which, when loaded with micron conductive powders or micron conductive fibers, become composites which are conductors rather than insulators. [0013]
  • Antenna elements are fabricated from the conductive loaded resins. Almost any type of antenna can be fabricated from the conductive loaded resin-based materials, such as dipole antennas, monopole antennas, planar antennas or the like. These antennas can be tuned to a desired frequency range. [0014]
  • The antennas can be molded or extruded to provide the desired shape. The conductive loaded resin-based materials can be cut, injection molded, over-molded, laminated, extruded, milled or the like to provide the desired antenna shape and size. The antenna characteristics depend on the composition of the conductive loaded resin-based materials, which can be adjusted to aid in achieving the desired antenna characteristics. Virtually any antenna fabricated by conventional means such as wire, strip-line, printed circuit boards, or the like can be fabricated using the conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0015]
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a dipole antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material. [0016]
  • FIG. 2A shows a front view of the dipole antenna of FIG. 1 showing insulating material between the radiating antenna element and a ground plane. [0017]
  • FIG. 2B shows a front view of the dipole antenna of FIG. 1 showing insulating material between both the radiating antenna element and the counterpoise antenna element and a ground plane. [0018]
  • FIG. 2C shows an amplifier inserted between the radiating antenna element and the coaxial cable center conductor for the dipole antenna of FIG. 1. [0019]
  • FIG. 3 shows a segment of an antenna element formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material showing a metal insert for connecting to conducting cable elements. [0020]
  • FIG. 4A shows a perspective view of a patch antenna comprising a radiating antenna element and a ground plane with the coaxial cable entering through the ground plane. [0021]
  • FIG. 4B shows a perspective view of a patch antenna comprising a radiating antenna element and a ground plane with the coaxial cable entering between the ground plane and the radiating antenna element. [0022]
  • FIG. 5 shows an amplifier inserted between the radiating antenna element and the coaxial cable center conductor for the patch antenna of FIGS. 4A and 4B. [0023]
  • FIG. 6 shows a perspective view of a monopole antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material. [0024]
  • FIG. 7 shows a perspective view of a monopole antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material with an amplifier between the radiating antenna element and the coaxial cable center conductor. [0025]
  • FIG. 8A shows a top view of an antenna having a single L shaped antenna element formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material. [0026]
  • FIG. 8B shows a cross section view of the antenna element of FIG. 8A taken along line [0027] 8B-8B′ of FIG. 8A.
  • FIG. 8C shows a cross section view of the antenna element of FIG. 8A taken along line [0028] 8C-8C′ of FIG. 8A.
  • FIG. 9A shows a top view of an antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material embedded in an automobile bumper. [0029]
  • FIG. 9B shows a front view of an antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material embedded in an automobile bumper formed of an insulator such as rubber. [0030]
  • FIG. 10A shows a schematic view of an antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material embedded in the molding of a vehicle window. [0031]
  • FIG. 10B shows a schematic view of an antenna formed from a conductive loaded resin-based material embedded in the plastic case of a portable electronic device. [0032]
  • FIG. 11 shows a cross section view of a conductive loaded resin-based material comprising a powder of conductor materials. [0033]
  • FIG. 12 shows a cross section view of a conductive loaded resin-based material comprising conductor fibers. [0034]
  • FIG. 13 shows a simplified schematic view of an apparatus for forming injection molded antenna elements. [0035]
  • FIG. 14 shows a simplified schematic view of an apparatus for forming extruded antenna elements. [0036]
  • FIG. 15A shows a top view of fibers of conductive loaded resin-based material webbed into a conductive fabric. [0037]
  • FIG. 15B shows a top view of fibers of conductive loaded resin-based material woven into a conductive fabric. [0038]
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • The following embodiments are examples of antennas fabricated using conductive loaded resin-based materials. In some of the examples ground planes are also used and these ground planes can be formed of either conductive loaded resin-based materials or metals. The use of these conductive loaded resin-based materials in antenna fabrication significantly lowers the cost of materials and manufacturing processes used in the assembly antennas and the ease of forming these materials into the desired shapes. These materials can be used to form either receiving or transmitting antennas. The antennas and/or ground planes can be formed using methods such as injection molding, overmolding, or extrusion of the conductive loaded resin-based materials. [0039]
  • The conductive loaded resin-based materials typically but not exclusively have a conductivity of between about 5 and 25 ohms per square. The antenna elements, used to form the antennas, are formed of the conductive loaded resin-based materials and can be formed using methods such as injection molding, overmolding, or extrusion. The antenna elements can also be stamped to produce the desired shape. The conductive loaded resin-based material antenna elements can also cut or milled as desired. [0040]
  • The conductive loaded resin-based materials comprise micron conductive powders or fibers loaded in a structural resin. The micron conductive powders are formed of metals such as nickel, copper, silver or the like. The micron conductive fibers can be nickel plated carbon fiber, stainless steel fiber, copper fiber, silver fiber, or the like. The structural material is a material such as a polymer resin. Structural material can be, here given as examples and not as an exhaustive list, polymer resins produced by GE PLASTICS, Pittsfield, Mass., a range of other plastics produced by GE PLASTICS, Pittsfield, Mass., a range of other plastics produced by other manufacturers, silicones produced by GE SILICONES, Waterford, N.Y., or other flexible resin-based rubber compounds produced by other manufacturers. The resin-based structural material loaded with micron conductive powders or fibers can be molded, using a method such as injection molding, overmolding, or extruded to the desired shape. The conductive loaded resin-based materials can be cut or milled as desired to form the desired shape of the antenna elements. The composition of the composite materials can affect the antenna characteristics and must be properly controlled. The composite could also be in the family of polyesters with woven or webbed micron stainless steel fibers or other micron conductive fibers forming a cloth like material which, when properly designed in metal content and shape, can be used to realize a very high performance cloth antenna. Such a cloth antenna could be embedded in a persons clothing as well as in insulating materials such as rubber or plastic. The woven or webbed conductive cloths could also be laminated to materials such as Teflon, FR-4, or any resin-based hard material. [0041]
  • Refer now to FIGS. 1-10B for examples of antennas fabricated using conductive loaded resin-based materials. These antennas can be either receiving or transmitting antennas. FIG. 1 shows a perspective drawing of a dipole antenna with a radiating antenna element [0042] 12 and a counterpoise antenna element 10 formed from conductive loaded resin-based materials. The antenna comprises a radiating antenna element 12 and a counterpoise antenna element 10 each having a length 24 and a rectangular cross section perpendicular to the length 24. The length 24 is greater than three multiplied by the square root of the cross sectional area. The center conductor 14 of a coaxial cable 50,is electrically connected to the radiating antenna element 12 using a metal insert 15 formed in the radiating antenna element 12. The shield 52 of the coaxial cable 50 is connected to the counterpoise antenna element 10 using a metal insert formed in the counterpoise antenna element 10. The metal insert in the counterpoise antenna element 10 is not visible in FIG. 1 but is the same as the metal insert 15 in the radiating antenna element 12. The length 24 is a multiple of a quarter wavelength of the optimum frequency of detection or transmission of the antenna. The impedance of the antenna at resonance should be very nearly equal to the impedance of the coaxial cable 50 to assure maximum power transfer between cable and antenna.
  • FIG. 3 shows a detailed view of a metal insert [0043] 15 formed in a segment 11 of an antenna element. The metal insert can be copper or other metal. A screw 17 can be used in the metal insert 15 to aid in electrical connections. Soldering or other electrical connection methods can also be used.
  • FIG. 1 shows an example of a dipole antenna with the radiating antenna element [0044] 12 placed on a layer of insulating material 22, which is placed on a ground plane 20, and the counterpoise antenna element 10 placed directly on the ground plane 20. The ground plane 20 is optional and if the ground plane is not used the layer of insulating material 22 may not be necessary. As another option the counterpoise antenna element 10 can also be placed on a layer of insulating material 22, see FIG. 2A. If the ground plane 20 is used it can also be formed of the conductive loaded resin-based materials.
  • FIG. 2A shows a front view of the dipole antenna of FIG. 1 for the example of an antenna using a ground plane [0045] 20, a layer of insulating material 22 between the radiating antenna element 12 and the ground plane 20, and the counterpoise antenna element 10 placed directly on the ground plane 20. FIG. 2B shows a front view of the dipole antenna of FIG. 1 for the example of an antenna using a ground plane 20 and a layer of insulating material 22 between both the radiating antenna element 12 and the counterpoise antenna element 10.
  • As shown in FIG. 2C, an amplifier [0046] 72 can be inserted between the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable and the radiating antenna element 12. A wire 70 connects metal insert 15 in the radiating antenna element 12 to the amplifier 72. For receiving antennas the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 12 and the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50. For transmitting antennas the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 12 and the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50.
  • In one example of this antenna the length [0047] 24 is about 1.5 inches with a square cross section of about 0.09 square inches. This antenna had a center frequency of about 900 MHz.
  • FIGS. 4A and 4B show perspective views of a patch antenna with a radiating antenna element [0048] 40 and a ground plane 42 formed from conductive loaded resin-based materials. The antenna comprises a radiating antenna element 40 and a ground plane 42 each having the shape of a rectangular plate with a thickness 44 and a separation between the plates 46 provided by insulating standoffs 60. The square root of the area of the rectangular square plate forming the radiating antenna element 40 is greater than three multiplied by the thickness 44. In one example of this antenna wherein the rectangular plate is a square with sides of 1.4 inches and a thickness of 0.41 inches the patch antenna provided good performance at Global Position System, GPS, frequencies of about 1.5 MHz.
  • FIG. 4A shows an example of the patch antenna where the coaxial cable [0049] 50 enters through the ground plane 42. The coaxial cable shield 52 is connected to the ground plane 42 by means of a metal insert 15 in the ground plane. The coaxial cable center conductor 14 is connected to the radiating antenna element 40 by means of a metal insert 15 in the radiating antenna element 40. FIG. 4B shows an example of the patch antenna where the coaxial cable 50 enters between the radiating antenna element 40 and the ground plane 42. The coaxial cable shield 52 is connected to the ground plane 42 by means of a metal insert 15 in the ground plane 42. The coaxial cable center conductor 14 is connected to the radiating antenna element 40 by means of a metal insert 15 in the radiating antenna element 40.
  • As shown in FIG. 5 an amplifier [0050] 72 can be inserted between the coaxial cable center conductor 14 and the radiating antenna element 40. A wire 70 connects the amplifier 72 to the metal insert 15 in the radiating antenna element 40. For receiving antennas the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 40 and the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50. For transmitting antennas the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 40 and the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50.
  • FIG. 6 shows an example of a monopole antenna having a radiating antenna element [0051] 64, having a height 71, arranged perpendicular to a ground plane 68. The radiating antenna element 64 and the ground plane 68 are formed of conductive plastic or conductive composite materials. A layer of insulating material 66 separates the radiating antenna element 64 from the ground plane 68. The height 71 of the radiating antenna element 64 is greater than three times the square root of the cross sectional area of the radiating antenna element 64. An example of this antenna with a height 71 of 1.17 inches performed well at GPS frequencies of about 1.5 GHz.
  • FIG. 7 shows an example of the monopole antenna described above with an amplifier [0052] 72 inserted between the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50 and the radiating antenna element 64. For receiving antennas the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 64 and the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 50. For transmitting antennas the output of the amplifier 72 is connected to the radiating antenna element 64 and the input of the amplifier 72 is connected to the center conductor 14 of the coaxial cable 5.0.
  • FIGS. 8A, 8B, and [0053] 8C shows an example of an L shaped antenna having a radiating antenna element 80 over a ground plane 98. The radiating antenna element 80 and the ground plane 98 are formed of conductive loaded resin-based materials. A layer of insulating material 96 separates the radiating antenna element 64 from the ground plane 98. The radiating antenna element 80 is made up of a first leg 82 and a second leg 84. FIG. 8A shows a top view of the antenna. FIG. 8B shows a cross section of the first leg 82. FIG. 8C shows a cross section of the second leg 84. FIGS. 8B and 8C show the ground plane 98 and the layer of insulating material 96. The cross sectional area of the first leg 82 and the second leg 84 need not be the same. Antennas of this type may be typically built using overmolding technique to join the conductive resin-based material to the insulating material.
  • Antennas of this type have a number of uses. FIGS. 9A and 9B show a dipole antenna, formed of conductive loaded resin-based materials, embedded in an automobile bumper [0054] 100, formed of insulating material. The dipole antenna has a radiating antenna element 102 and a counterpoise antenna element 104. FIG. 9A shows the top view of the bumper 100 with the embedded antenna. FIG. 9B shows the front view of the bumper 100 with the embedded antenna.
  • The antennas of this invention, formed of conductive loaded resin-based materials, can be used for a number of additional applications. Antennas of this type can be embedded in the molding of a window of a vehicle, such as an automobile or an airplane. FIG. 10A shows a schematic view of such a window [0055] 106. The antenna 110 can be embedded in the molding 108. Antennas of this type can be embedded in the plastic housing, or be part of the plastic shell itself, of portable electronic devices such as cellular phones, personal computers, or the like. FIG. 10B shows a schematic view of a segment 112 of such a plastic housing with the antenna 110 embedded in the housing 112.
  • The conductive loaded resin-based material typically comprises a powder of conductor particles or a fiber of a conductor material in a resin or plastic host. FIG. 11 shows cross section view of an example of conductor loaded resin-based material [0056] 212 having powder of conductor particles 202 in a resin or plastic host 204. In this example the diameter 200 of the of the conductor particles 202 in the powder is between about 3 and 11 microns. FIG. 12 shows a cross section view of an example of conductor loaded resin-based material 212 having conductor fibers 210 in a resin or plastic host 204. In this example the conductor fibers 210 have a diameter of between about 3 and 11 microns and a length of between about 5 and 10 millimeters. The conductors used for these conductor particles 202 or conductor fibers 210 can stainless steel, nickel, copper, silver, or other suitable metals. These conductor particles or fibers are embedded in a resin which in turn is embedded in a plastic host. As previously mentioned, the conductive loaded resin-based materials have a conductivity of between about 5 and 25 ohms per square. To realize this conductivity the ratio of the weight of the conductor material, in this example the conductor particles 202 or conductor fibers 210, to the weight of the resin or plastic host 204 is between about 0.20 and 0.40.
  • Antenna elements formed from conductive loaded resin-based materials can be formed in a number of different ways including injection molding or extrusion. FIG. 13 shows a simplified schematic diagram of an injection mold showing a lower portion [0057] 230 and upper portion 231 of the mold. Uncured conductive loaded resin-based material is injected into the mold cavity 237 through an injection opening 235 and cured. The upper portion 231 and lower portion 230 of the mold are then separated and the cured antenna element is removed.
  • FIG. 14 shows a simplified schematic diagram of an extruder for forming antenna elements using extrusion. Uncured conductive loaded resin-based material is placed in the cavity [0058] 239 of the extrusion unit 234. A piston 236 or other means is then used to force the uncured conductive loaded resin-based material through an extrusion opening 240 which shapes the partially cured conductive loaded resin-based material to the desired shape. The conductive loaded resin-based material is then fully cured and is ready for use.
  • The conductive loaded resin based material can be formed into fibers which are woven or webbed into a conductive fabric. FIG. 15A shows a webbed conductive fabric [0059] 230. FIG. 15B shows a webbed conductive fabric 232. This conductive fabric, 230 and/or 232, can be very thin and cut into desired shapes to form antenna elements. These antenna elements can take the shape of a host and attached as desired.
  • Antennas formed from the conductive loaded resin-based materials can be designed to work at frequencies from about 2 Kilohertz to about 300 Gigahertz. [0060]
  • While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to the preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that various changes in form and details may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.[0061]

Claims (23)

    What is claimed is:
  1. 1. An antenna comprising:
    a number of antenna elements formed of a conductive loaded resin-based material, wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material comprises conductor fibers in a resin or plastic host and the ratio of the weight of said conductor fibers to the weight of said resin or plastic host is between about 0.20 and 0.40; and
    electrical communication to and among said antenna elements.
  2. 2-30. (CANCELLED)
  3. 31. A conductive composite, comprising:
    a base resin host; and
    micron conductor particles in said base resin host wherein the ratio of the weight of said micron conductor particles to the weight of said base resin host is between about 0.20 and 0.40, thereby forming a conductive loaded resin-based material.
  4. 32. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said micron conductor particles have generally spherical shapes and diameters of between about 3 and 11 microns.
  5. 33. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said micron conductor particles are stainless steel, nickel, copper, or silver.
  6. 34. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said base resin host is a polymer resin.
  7. 35. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material has a resistivity of between about 5 and 25 ohms per square.
  8. 36. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be used to fabricate antennas.
  9. 37. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be used to fabricate ground planes.
  10. 38. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be molded or extruded to form desired shapes.
  11. 39. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be cut or milled to form desired shapes.
  12. 40. The conductive composite of claim 31 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be formed into fibers which can be woven or webbed into a conductive fabric.
  13. 41. A conductive composite, comprising:
    a base resin host; and
    micron conductor fibers in said base resin host wherein the ratio of the weight of said micron conductor fibers to the weight of said base resin host is between about 0.20 and 0.40, thereby forming a conductive loaded resin-based material.
  14. 42. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said micron conductor fibers have diameters of between about 3 and 11 microns.
  15. 43. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said micron conductor fibers have lengths of between about 5 and 10 millimeters.
  16. 44. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said micron conductor fibers are stainless steel, nickel, copper, silver, or nickel plated carbon.
  17. 45. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said base resin host is a polymer resin.
  18. 46. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material has a resistivity of between about 5 and 25 ohms per square.
  19. 47. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be used to fabricate antennas.
  20. 48. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be used to fabricate ground planes.
  21. 49. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be molded or extruded to form desired shapes.
  22. 50. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be cut or milled to form desired shapes.
  23. 51. The conductive composite of claim 41 wherein said conductive loaded resin-based material can be formed into fibers which can be woven or webbed into a conductive fabric.
US10877092 2001-02-15 2004-06-25 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites Abandoned US20040233112A1 (en)

Priority Applications (6)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US26882201 true 2001-02-15 2001-02-15
US26941401 true 2001-02-16 2001-02-16
US31780801 true 2001-09-07 2001-09-07
US10075778 US6741221B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2002-02-14 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites
US10309429 US6870516B2 (en) 2001-02-16 2002-12-04 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites
US10877092 US20040233112A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2004-06-25 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites

Applications Claiming Priority (65)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US10877092 US20040233112A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2004-06-25 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites
US11060274 US7198735B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-02-17 Low cost roofing shingles manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US11083467 US20050208251A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-18 Low cost electrically conductive tapes and films manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11083599 US20050161142A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-18 Low cost conductive brushes manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11083598 US20050160547A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-18 Low cost conductive brushes manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11083468 US20050178496A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-18 Low cost electrically conductive tapes and films manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11086852 US20050167931A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-22 Low cost gaskets manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11086853 US20050167133A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-22 Low cost gaskets manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11089292 US20050162133A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-24 Low cost charger connections manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based material
US11089293 US20050200329A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-24 Low cost charger connections manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based material
US11095871 US20050205551A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-31 Low cost heated clothing manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11096176 US20050172950A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-03-31 Low cost heated clothing manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US11096608 US20050202296A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-04-01 Low cost fuel cell bipolar plates manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US11121378 US20050202160A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-05-04 Low cost electrically conductive carpeting manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11121681 US20050208246A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-05-04 Low cost conductive pipe manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US11127574 US7268461B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-05-12 Low cost electrical motor components manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US11286227 US7268562B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-11-23 Low cost detectible pipe and electric fencing manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US11313015 US7708920B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2005-12-20 Conductively doped resin moldable capsule and method of manufacture
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US11335362 US20060137688A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2006-01-19 Medical devices manufactured from conductively doped resin-based materials
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US11378061 US20060174753A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2006-03-17 Musical instruments and components manufactured from conductively doped resin-based materials
US11496098 US20060287126A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2006-07-29 Sporting equipment manufactured from conductively doped resin-based materials
US11983363 US20080063864A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2007-11-08 Variable-thickness elecriplast moldable capsule and method of manufacture
US12807447 US20100326236A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2010-09-07 Low cost housings for vehicle mechanical devices and systems manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US13572211 US20130031774A1 (en) 2004-05-13 2012-08-10 Low cost electrical motor components manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US14278837 US20140246800A1 (en) 2004-05-13 2014-05-15 Low cost electrical motor components manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
US14293315 US20140272117A1 (en) 2004-06-09 2014-06-02 Low cost vehicle electrical and electronic components and systems manufactured from conductive loaded resin-based materials
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US14326542 US20140322532A1 (en) 2001-02-15 2014-07-09 Variable-thickness elecriplast moldable capsule and method of manufacture

Related Parent Applications (1)

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US10309429 Continuation US6870516B2 (en) 2001-02-15 2002-12-04 Low cost antennas using conductive plastics or conductive composites

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US6870516B2 (en) 2005-03-22 grant
US20040051666A1 (en) 2004-03-18 application
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EP1427055A1 (en) 2004-06-09 application
KR20040048848A (en) 2004-06-10 application

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