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Title: A reconfigurable liquid metal antenna driven by electrochemically controlled capillarity

We describe a new electrochemical method for reversible, pump-free control of liquid eutectic gallium and indium (EGaIn) in a capillary. Electrochemical deposition (or removal) of a surface oxide on the EGaIn significantly lowers (or increases) its interfacial tension as a means to induce the liquid metal in (or out) of the capillary. A fabricated prototype demonstrates this method in a reconfigurable antenna application in which EGaIn forms the radiating element. By inducing a change in the physical length of the EGaIn, the operating frequency of the antenna tunes over a large bandwidth. This purely electrochemical mechanism uses low, DC voltages to tune the antenna continuously and reversibly between 0.66 GHz and 3.4 GHz resulting in a 5:1 tuning range. Gain and radiation pattern measurements agree with electromagnetic simulations of the device, and its measured radiation efficiency varies from 41% to 70% over its tuning range.
Authors:
;  [1] ; ; ;  [2]
  1. Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606 (United States)
  2. Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22410224
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 117; Journal Issue: 19; Other Information: (c) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; ANTENNAS; CAPILLARIES; DIRECT CURRENT; ELECTRIC POTENTIAL; ELECTROCHEMISTRY; ELECTRODEPOSITION; EUTECTICS; GAIN; GALLIUM; GHZ RANGE; INDIUM; LIQUID METALS; SURFACE TENSION; SURFACES