Precision Alignment of Two mm-Wave Antennas Using An Improved Optical Alignment Tool

Published: August 01, 2012


Joshua A. Gordon, David R. Novotny


In this paper we present an optical imaging tool, the Overlay Imaging Aligner (OIA), developed to aid in the mechanical alignment of antenna components in the mm-wave and low-THz frequency regimes (50-500GHz) where the millimeter and sub-millimeter wavelengths pose significant challenges for alignment. The OIA uses a polarization-selective, machine-vision approach to generate two simultaneous and overlaid real-time digital images along a common axis. This allows for aligning two antenna components to within fractions of a wavelength in the mm-wave and THz frequency regimes. The overall concept, optical design, function, performance characteristics and application examples are presented. Preliminary data at specific frequencies in the WR-2.2 band are presented that compare the alignment achieved with the OIA to an electrical alignment.
Citation: IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement
Volume: 54
Issue: 4
Pub Type: Journals


Alignment, electromagnetic testing, instrumentation, microwave measurements, millimeter wave measurements, THz, waveguide, imaging
Created August 01, 2012, Updated February 19, 2017