Electromagnetics Research: Materials Characterization Group

Edward Rothwell | rothwell@egr. msu.edu | www.egr.msu.edu/~rothwell/


The electromagnetic research group consists of four faculty members (Rothwell, Kempel, Balasubramaniam, and Chahal), and carries out a wide variety of research projects spanning the computational, theoretical, and experimental domains. The group comprises approximately 25 graduate and undergraduate students, post docs, and visiting scholars. This document describes work led by Professor Rothwell. Note that all group members collaborate widely, and most projects overlap among the domains.

Self-Structuring Antennas

Self-structuring antenna systems are a new and innovative type of antenna that consists of a switchable template coupled to a controller and a feedback sensor that allows the system to change its electrical shape in response to changes in frequency, operating mission, or physical environment, and to self-repair in response to being damaged. Prof. Rothwell is the inventor on the fundamental patent held by MSU, and two additional patents were granted in 2014. The spin-out company Monarch Antennas Inc (www.monarchantenna.com) was created as a joint venture between Delphi Technologies and MSU to commercialize the technology. Applications include antennas for ground and air vehicles, cellular telephones, tablet computers, and televisions.

Miniaturized Antennas and Meta-Material Systems

Metamaterials are artificially constructed materials that have properties not found in nature, specifically negative permittivity and permeability. These properties may be exploited in a number of clever ways to create miniaturized antennas and microwave systems. We have explored techniques for optimizing the structure of metamaterials and have created several new types of miniaturized antennas, microwave filters, and frequency-selective surfaces. We have also explored novel techniques for tuning metamaterials including the use of origami folding of planar structures

Characterization of the Electromagnetic Properties of Materials

The EM research group has been developing techniques for characterizing the electromagnetic properties of materials for nearly 25 years. Recently the group has been examining methods to characterize absorbing materials, composite materials, artificially engineered materials, and anisotropic materials, and has been working with researchers at several universities to develop applications for these materials. We have developed specialized applicators to be used with free space (antenna-based), waveguide, microstrip, and stripline systems.