A liquid metal-based structurally embedded vascular antenna: II. Multiobjective and parameterized design exploration
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© 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd. Research on the structurally embedded vascular antenna concept leverages past efforts on liquid metal (LM) reconfigurable electronics, microvascular composites, and structurally integrated and reconfigurable antennas. Such a concept has potential for reducing system weight or volume while simultaneously allowing in situ adjustment of resonant frequencies and/or changes in antenna directivity. This work considers a microvascular pattern embedded in a laminated composite and filled with LM. The conductive liquid provides radio frequency (RF) functionality while also allowing self-cooling. Models describing RF propagation and heat transfer, in addition to the structural effects of both the inclusion of channels and changes in temperature, were described in part 1 of this two-part work. In this part 2, the engineering models developed and demonstrated in part 1 toward the initial exploration of design trends are implemented into multiple optimization frameworks for more detailed design studies, one of which being novel and particularly applicable to this class of problem. The computational expense associated with the coupled multiphysical analysis of the structurally embedded LM transmitting antenna motivates the consideration of surrogate-based optimization methods. Both static and adaptive approaches are explored; it is shown that iteratively correcting the surrogate leads to more accurate optimized design predictions. The expected strong dependence of antenna performance on thermal environment motivates the consideration of a novel 'parameterized' optimization approach that simultaneously calculates whole families of optimal designs based on changes in design or operational variables generally beyond the control of the designer. The change in Pareto-optimal response with evolution in operating conditions is clearly demonstrated.
author list (cited authors)
Hartl, D. J., Frank, G. J., Malak, R. J., & Baur, J. W.