On the application of micro hot embossing for mass fabrication of template-based dielectric resonator antenna arrays
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In this article, application of micro-replication of polymers in the field of next generation mm-wave antennas is presented for the first time. The concept is applied to recently proposed template-based dielectric resonator antenna arrays fabricated by deep X-ray lithography. In this work, the array templates are replicated by hot embossing of polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) layers using a nickel mold insert fabricated from the direct X-ray exposed PMMA master (LIGA process). Transfer quality of the master pattern is examined through measurements by optical microscope. Under controlled conditions, a number of templates are replicated demonstrating repeatable quality and consistent performance among the devices. A four element dielectric resonator antenna array is fabricated and measured for the impedance bandwidth response. This proposed methodology has the potential to enable low cost and mass utilization of dielectric resonator antennas and arrays in future millimeter-wave applications.
We acknowledge the Karlsruhe Nano Micro Facility (KNMF) (http://www.kit.edu/knmf) of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) for provision of access to instruments at their laboratories. Special thanks to Dr. Matthias Worgull for his guidance in hot embossing process.
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