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Publication Title

IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation


This paper investigates the bit error rate (BER) performance of digital modulations in a system with a scanning reflectarray antenna. A reflectarray causes intersymbol interference (ISI) in a digitally modulated signal, its phase shifters' phase errors cause signal distortion, and its phase shifters' phase transient causes beam pattern degradation during direction switching. In this paper, composite signal models of the reflectarray are established for both static and transient states. Due to different feed-to-element distances and the element-to-observation distances, different delays exist in signal components. These delays cause ISI whose effect is analyzed and evaluated. Effects of phase shifters' phase errors and phase transient during beam switching are also analyzed and evaluated. Numerical calculations and simulations are performed. The analytical and simulation results for an example reflectarray at fc=26.5 GHz and bit rate of 1.325 Gbps show that the BER degradation due to ISI is proportional to the symbol rate and the loss ranges from about 1 dB to around 2 dB in Eb/No, depending on original Eb/No, for BPSK, QPSK, 8PSK, and 16QAM. The phase error effect is negligible for lower order modulations and is unacceptable for higher order modulations such as 64QAM and 256QAM. The degradation due to phase transient effect is about 2 dB for BPSK and QPSK.

Original Citation

Fuqin, X., & Romanofsky, R. R. (2005). Study of behavior of digital modulations for beam steerable reflectarray antennas. IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation, 53, 3, 1083-1097.