June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Electrical and Computer
26.26.1 - 26.26.15
A Concise Antennas Course based on a Single Semester of Electromagnetics PreparationA new undergraduate elective course that develops a background in antennas for senior electricalengineering students is presented. The course is only three quarter-credits long, that is, twosemester-credits. An innovative aspect of this course is the modest prerequisite of only a Junior-level, four semester-credit lecture hours electromagnetics course or equivalent. In our quarter-based system, four semester-credit lecture hours translates into two courses of three quarter-credit lecture hours each. The prerequisite courses, required in our undergraduate electricalengineering curriculum, modulate the depth and breadth of topics, starting with vector algebraand coordinate systems and progressing through static fields, dynamic fields, transmission lines,plane waves, links, and electromagnetic interference principles. The integral forms of thefundamental electromagnetic relations are emphasized in these required courses. As a result, thisantennas elective must incorporate pedagogically-selected background material such asdifferential operators and the differential forms of Maxwell’s equations, skin depth, andreflection and transmission of plane waves at material interfaces. The course builds a solidfoundation in antenna principles that serves students continuing into advanced studies ingraduate school as well as those entering industry after graduation. This foundation isaccomplished by strategically selecting topics in a pedagogic progression that focus ondeveloping insights into the fundamental concepts underlying antennas. Consequently, thecourse is not a survey course nor is it overstuffed. The course utilizes a thorough study of thedipole antenna as the vehicle for developing these fundamentals. The magnetic vector potentialis used to derive the radiated dipole fields, which are then used to develop the concepts ofradiation resistance, radiation efficiency, bandwidth, directivity, gain, and polarization. Imagetheory is used to develop the monopole antenna and analyze the effects of a ground plane on anantenna. These concepts are then extended to general linear arrays of antennas. Basicpropagation and system link analysis are then used to examine the impact of antennas on theperformance of practical real-world systems. In this paper, the structure of the electromagneticscourses is examined initially to establish the prerequisite context. Details of the antennas courseapproach, structure, and implementation are presented, including the learning objectives, coursetopical and pedagogic flow, and a practical antenna design project utilizing the NEC2computational electromagnetics software. The paper concludes with assessment resultsaddressing the effectiveness of the approach in the elective, lessons learned and plannedimprovements for future offerings of the course.
Holland, S. S., & Strangeway, R. A. (2015, June), A Concise Antennas Course Based on a Single Semester of Electromagnetics Preparation Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23367
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2015 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015