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Part 2: Radiation characteristic and polarization

of decimeter waves
Mrunal Korwar


This experiment was performed in order to study qualitatively and
quantitatively, the polarization and radiation characteristics of dipole an-
tenna. Dipole antenna of type half wavelength and, receiver antenna
of same length as that of dipole antenna was used. Measurements for
voltages were performed using multimeter. For the case of radiation char-
acteristic modified setup was used and general features of dipole antenna
like the linear polarization and decease in intensity with increasing the
radial distance were observed.

1 Introduction
In a straight conductor, electromagnetic oscillations can be excited similarly
as in oscillatory circuit. Such an oscillator radiates electromagnetic waves as,
radiation falling on conductors electron oscillates them and energy is released
in the form EM waves[2]; the radiated intensity being highest when the length
of conductor is equal to half the wavelength(this is so called /2 dipole)[1].
The qualitative study with help of receiver antenna can be performed to iden-
tify polarization characteristic of antenna, whereas both azimuthal and zenith
radiation characteristics can be obtained using our modified setup as given in

2 Theory
The radiated waves from dipole antenna can be detected by means of a
straight conductor (usually called receiver antenna) aligned parallel to the trans-
mitter and also having length /2. The alternating electric field of the radiation
induces an alternating current in the antenna and the decimeter waves can be
detected by supplying a lamp with this current. In order to measure the received
field strength the voltage can after passing a high-frequency rectifier also to be
fed to a measuring instrument. Dipoles used in practice are slightly shorter
than /2 because, in the case of finite diameters there is a contracting factor

for overall length and a larger band width due to a flattening of the resonance
curve of the antenna.
Typical features of dipole antenna are angular distribution(azimuthal and
zenith) and the polarization of radiated waves. The radiated intensity is zero
along the axis of the dipole antenna and has its maximum perpendicular to the
axis. Moreover the waves are linearly polarized in the direction of antennas

3 Experimental setup and procedure

Experiment was carried out using UHF generator operating at frequency
of 433.92 MHz in CW mode, loop dipole of length 25.0 0.1 cm(measured using
steel tape having least count of 0.1 cm) having distance of 12.59 0.01mm
(measured using vernier caliper having least cunt of 0.01 mm) was connected
to the antenna output of this generator using 4 mm plug. For qualitative study
of dipole antenna, receiver antenna of length 25.0 0.1 cm connected by lamp
(operating above 3.8V /0.07A) was kept at different positions as shown in fig[1,3],
because of the limitation due to lamp(poor sensitivity) distance of the receiver
antenna was kept about 1 m for 1a, 1b, 3a, 3b and for the case of 2a and 2b it
was kept about 0.4 m.
For the radiation characteristic measurement setup had been highly modified
as compared to given in the Manuel, images of the modified setup are given in
fig[2]. For the case of Azimuthal radiation characteristic dipole antenna was
rotated by successive 30 degrees in radius 30 cm around receiver antenna which
was connected to multimeter having least count of 0.1 V. For the case of Zenith
radiation characteristic receiver antenna was rotated by successive 10 degrees
about center of cardboard, reading had been taken for 30, 35, 40 cm distance
from dipole antenna.

Figure 1: Experimental setup for qualitative study

Figure 2: Experimental setup for radiation characteristic(a)Zenith

4 Observations and Calculation
1. Qualitative study

Figure 3: Positions for qualitative study

For the positions 1a and 2a lamp had glowed bright, and for remaining
ones it didnt glow.

2. Radiation characteristic
Following plots are for modified experiment data sets for the given plots
are in the appendix.

Figure 4: Plot for radiation characteristic Azimuthal(above(a)) and


5 Discussion and Interpretation
Qualitative analysis suggest that EM waves coming out of dipole antenna
are linearly polarized, same could be verified using radiation characteristic plots.
For Azimuthal case where dipole and receiver antenna are in the same plane,
maxima occurs at 90 degree representing position 1a from fig[3], as graph suggest
value of voltage gets decreased while moving right or left from this 1a position
and minima occurs at 0, 180 degree both representing 3a position matching
with the theoretical prediction[2]. Nothing can be predicted from this graph
about the symmetry of radiation characteristic around position 1a[representing
90 degree in graph(a)].
For the zenith case where receiver antenna kept at position 1a and and ro-
tated about the center of cardboard, as graph suggest maxima occur at 0 degree,
and voltage gets decreased while moving towards position 1b, and minima oc-
curs at position 1b which was also verified successfully by qualitative study.
Important thing to notice from the graph(b) is the symmetry about position
1b(representing 90 degree on the graph(b)) and decrease in voltage as distance
from dipole antenna increases both of these characteristic matches with theo-
retical predictions.
Source of error occurring in the experiment includes surrounding metal ob-
jects, though in the modified experiment we had placed setup symmetric w.r.t
metal surrounding and as results suggest general characteristics of dipole an-
tenna got preserved, but the graph(b) would have been shifted slightly upward
and giving us nonzero value at position 1b[representing 90 degree in graph(b)],
but this error could have majorly affected the Azimuthal case giving us no free-
dom to predict the symmetric behavior which theory predicts[2]. To verify that
this might be the case one should have performed experiment in the metal free
In our trial experiments we noticed that the position of experimenter or
the leads connecting to multimeter had affect on the voltage readings but in
subsequent trials we tried to minimize it as much as possible, like sitting away
from source and keeping leads connecting to receiver antenna undisturbed as
much as possible and for this sole reason in the azimuthal case we rotated dipole
antenna instead of receiver and got consistent readings for consecutive three sets.
In case of zenith characteristic our motivation behind using cardboard in-
stead of PASCO angle measuring instrument was that in the later case one has
to hold receiver antenna and thus affecting voltage readings significantly as our
trial experiments suggested.

6 Conclusion
From above experiment we verify that, EM waves coming out of dipole
antenna are linearly polarized in the direction of dipole axis. As distance be-
tween dipole and receiver antenna increase, intensity(voltage) decreases. Zenith
radiation characteristic is symmetric about 90 degree position where intensity
is minimum and as one moves toward 0 degree intensity increases. For the az-
imuthal case, intensity deceases while moving towards 0, 180 degree from 90
degree position where intensity is maximum.

7 Acknowledgment
I would like to thank my lab partners Akash Ghevade and Jesil Jose for
helping me in the qualitative study measurements and trial experiments and
special thanks to Harsh Ghakre for helping me in the modified part of exper-
iment. I would also like to thank Sudhir Lone for helping us in the non-lab
hours. Finally I would like to thank our faculty, Seema Sharma and Dr.Shouvik
Datta for their constant support and guidance.

[1] Electromagnetic oscillations and waves Propagation of decimeter waves
along lines, Physics lab Manuel, Leybold physics leaflets.
[2] Feynman, Leighton, Sands: The Feynman Lectures on Physics Volume
2, Pearson, (2013).

Table 1: Azimuthal Data
Set 1 Set 2 set 3 Mean
Angle() Voltage(V) Angle() Voltage(V) Angle() Voltage(V) Angle() Voltage(V)
0 0.4 0 0.3 0 0.3 0 0.3
30 3.8 30 3.8 30 3.7 30 3.8
60 5.6 60 5.4 60 5.3 60 5.4
90 5.9 90 5.7 90 5.6 90 5.7
120 4.7 120 4.5 120 4.4 120 4.5
150 2.5 150 2.5 150 2.3 150 2.4
180 0.7 180 0.8 180 0.7 180 0.7

Table 2: Zenith charecteristic

Angle () d= 30cm d= 35cm d= 40cm

0 6.5 5.2 4.7
10 6.2 5 4.5
20 5.75 4.5 4
30 5.35 4.1 3.6
40 4.75 3.7 3.1
50 4.05 3.1 2.5
60 3.15 2.3 1.7
70 2.1 1.5 1.1
80 1.05 0.6 0.4
90 0.15 0.1 0.1
100 0.75 0.7 0.5
110 1.6 1.5 1.1
120 2.55 2.3 1.8
130 3.5 3 2.8
140 4.45 3.7 3.2
150 5.25 4.1 3.7
160 5.7 4.4 4.1
170 6.1 4.9 4.5
180 6.4 5.3 4.7