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MWEE MARAPR 2014

News Stretchable antenna developed for wearable health monitoring North Carolina State University researchers have developed a stretchable antenna that can be incorporated into wearable technologies, such as health monitoring devices. One of the key requirements of the project was to develop an antenna that could be stretched, rolled or twisted and always return to its original shape, because wearable systems can be subject to a variety of stresses as patients move around. To create an appropriately resilient, effective antenna, the researchers used a stencil to apply silver nanowires in a specific pattern and then poured a liquid polymer over the nanowires. When the polymer sets, it forms an elastic composite material that has the nanowires embedded in the desired pattern. This patterned material forms the radiating element of a microstrip patch antenna. By manipulating the shape and dimensions of the radiating element, one can control the frequency at which the antenna sends and receives signals. The radiating layer is then bonded to a “ground” layer, which is made of the same composite, except it has a continuous layer of silver nanowires embedded. Further, it was demonstrated that while the antenna’s frequency does change as it is stretched (since that changes its dimensions), the frequency stays within a defined bandwidth. Credit: Amanda Myers, co-author. Consequently, the antenna will still communicate effectively with remote equipment while being stretched. When the antenna returns to its original shape it was found to still work even after it had been significantly deformed, bent, twisted or rolled. “Our technique is relatively simple, can be integrated directly into the sensors themselves, and would be fairly easy to scale up,” says Dr. Yong Zhu, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at NC State and senior author of a paper describing the work. www.ncsu.edu Anite joins test project for 4G and 5G technologies Anite is participating in a project initiated by Intel to develop “virtualised” testing environments in order to accelerate 4G and 5G technology development and testing. Project Virtuoso (Virtualised environment for communication system development and optimisation), subsidised by the Danish High Technology Foundation, will run for four years and other partner companies include Telenor, one of the world’s major mobile operators, and Aalborg University Department of Electronic Systems, who will bring valuable operator and research knowledge. Within this project, Anite aims to enhance its Virtual Drive Testing Tools (VDT) to utilise data measured in the field to “virtually” recreate the field test environment in a laboratory. This enables quick, realistic and repeatable benchmarking of devices or base stations as well as simplifying the debugging of errors found in the field. VDT, based on the Propsim channel emulator, is a performance testing toolset which enables chipset and device manufacturers, as well as operators, to reduce the time and money spent on device design, integration and verification. By significantly enhancing the feedback loop from final-stage field trials to early-stage design development, the industry is able to accelerate development and launch of new mobile technologies. www.anite.com M2M satellite comms market to grow over 50% by 2019 A recent study by MarketsandMarkets reports that the global M2M satellite communication market is expected to grow from $2,983.4 million in 2014 to $4,763.4 million by 2019, at an estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.8% from 2014 to 2019. Increasing data communication need, rising M2M applications, and fast return on investments is leading to the creation of more and more avenues for M2M satellite market. With the advent of cloud applications in almost every other vertical, M2M satellite communications can offer enormous opportunities for the development of such solutions and services. Indeed, the application of M2M satellite communication across different verticals has created lots of opportunities for cloud-based solution providers. Transportation and logistics has the major market share in the vertical and is expected to grow in the forecast period. www.marketsandmarkets.com 64-bit mobile processors to dominate in 2018 With the introduction of A7, Apple has once again shaken the whole mobile industry, forcing chipset suppliers and device vendors to make 64-bit chips a high priority in their roadmaps. Just one quarter after the launch of the A7, the first 64-bit mobile processor, the company managed to power more than 36 million iPhones and iPads with this chip. Intel, Marvell, MediaTek, Qualcomm, and Nvidia all announced their first 64-bit mobile processors at Mobile World Congress this year but 64-bit-compliant smartphones are unlikely to hit the market before the release of the next Android update, expected in the second half of the year. By the end of 2014, ABI Research expects shipments of 64-bit mobile processors to exceed 182 million, of which only 20% will power Android devices. ARM will be the dominant instruction set for 64-bit mobile processing over the forecast period. www.abiresearch.com 6 Microwave Engineering Europe March-April 2014 www.microwave-eetimes.com


MWEE MARAPR 2014
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