Pathfinder Project (typically 6-12 months duration)
This seedcorn project investigates the design methodology for producing Gradient Index (GRIN) lenses for sub-mm wave applications in radiometers using metamaterials. The observation that there are standing waves in a sub-mm-wave radiometer system, due to reflections between horn feeds and focusing lenses, leads to a need to produce better matched horn / lens combinations to reduce beam distortion and reduce RF losses. The use of GRIN lenses may be indicated, but requiring complex dielectric formats and structures that are not easily produced in the microwave region. In particular, the use of metamaterials for the lens body may be required with permeability and dielectric constant varying in the lens volume. This project aims to identify suitable materials for space use, design and analysis methodologies to produce the correct metamaterial and the manufacturing requirements for a complete lens.
The lead organisation for this project is Astrium Ltd.