Silicon-photonics-based wideband radar beamforming: basic design

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Fathpour, Sasan
Riza, Nabeel A.
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Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)
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Proposed is silicon-photonics-based phased array antenna beamforming for high-resolution long-range radars with wide instantaneous radio frequency (rf) bandwidth. Specifically, the proposed silicon-photonics beamformer platform offers the potential for cost-effective monolithic chip-scale integration of photonic delay lines, 2×2 optical switches, variable optical attenuators, and optical amplifiers that form the base unit of a rf transmit/receive array signal processor. In effect, the proposed silicon-photonics devices empower the design of a powerful proposed photonic beamformer with one time-delay unit per antenna element. Device-level designs studies are shown that promise meeting the high-resolution radar mission-critical requirements via time delays of up to 2.5 ns, switching times of less than 100 ns, optical isolations as good as 50 dB, and optical gains of up to 6 dB. Longer delays are achieved off chip using optical fibers.
Silicon , Waveguides , Radar , Switches , Phased arrays , Switching , Photonics , Fourier optics and signal processing , Analog optical signal processing , Continuous optical signal processing
Riza, N. A. (2010) 'Silicon-photonics-based wideband radar beamforming: basic design', Optical Engineering 49(1), 018201, (7 pp). doi: 10.1117/1.3280286
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