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Proceedings Paper

Prototype testing and evaluation of a structurally integrated conformal antenna installation in the vertical tail of a military aircraft
Author(s): Allen J. Lockyer; Jayanth N. Kudva; Daniel P. Coughlin; Kevin H. Alt; Christopher A. Martin; Michael D. Durham; Allan C. Goetz
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Paper Abstract

Further proof-of-concept development for structurally integrating communication antennas in the vertical tail of a military aircraft at Northrop Grumman is presented. Bread board testing on a full scale dual tail aircraft mock-up of a structurally integrated multifunction tail tip antenna, in the VHF-FM, VHF-AM, and UHF-AM frequency regimes, has confirmed earlier simulation results, where it was suggested that smart skin installation electrical performance gain and radiation characteristics might compare favorable to conventional dorsal deck mounted blade installations. Scale model, and eventually full scale ground mock-up testing encouraged further development leading to fabrication of a preliminary flight test of a smart skin tip demonstration article. A low cost flight test program in the VHF SINCGARS band (30 to 88 MHz) has illustrated that structural integration, fabrication and manufacturing issues can be addressed for full feasibility with minimum penalties despite the hostile vibro-acoustic, moisture and electromagnetic environment. Salient features of the engineering technical design effort and recommendations for future concept development are discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 June 1997
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 3046, Smart Structures and Materials 1997: Smart Electronics and MEMS, (19 June 1997); doi: 10.1117/12.276605
Show Author Affiliations
Allen J. Lockyer, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Jayanth N. Kudva, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Daniel P. Coughlin, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Kevin H. Alt, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Christopher A. Martin, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Michael D. Durham, Northrop Grumman Corp. (United States)
Allan C. Goetz, TRW, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3046:
Smart Structures and Materials 1997: Smart Electronics and MEMS
Vijay K. Varadan; Paul J. McWhorter, Editor(s)

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