Thermoelastic Analysis of a Carbon-Fiber Compact Antenna Test Range Reflector

Authors: J. Hatzis, S.F. Gregson, C.G. Parini

Compact antenna test ranges (CATR) are attractive solutions for far-field measurements in a confined space with the single-offset reflector being the most common variation of deployed CATRs. Reflectors in these ranges emit a collimated plane-wave to simulate the far-field condition. This requires that each CATR must be properly focused and undergo careful alignment and validation, as any misalignment would perturb the plane wave. CATRs are normally designed to operate in environments with tight temperature control, however this is frequently impractical to implement in normal test environments. A carbon-fiber CATR reflector designed to be insensitive to temperature fluctuations can be an effective means to prevent thermally-induced deformation, and thus a corruption of the plane wave. This paper will illustrate the performance of this reflector over across a range of temperatures, and use a computational electromagnetic simulation to predict the impact on antenna measurements when the reflector is subjected to different temperatures.

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