Electronically Scanned Arrays for Fast Testing of Large Antennas
The use of probe array is a well established technology for spherical near field systems offering all the possibilities and accuracies of traditional single probe testing at a much faster speed [1-4]. Frequency ranges for probe arrays are from 75MHz to 18GHz and probes up to 40 GHz are currently under development.
Recently the problem of exhaustive testing of the high number of multi beam antennas embarked on future satellite systems has received considerable attention. Based on conventional measurements techniques this testing would lead to unacceptable cost and duration. Solutions based on “hybrid systems” taking full advantage of fast probe array technology on large mechanical scanners can drastically reduce the measurement time compared to conventional single probe test systems.
This paper discuss the adaptation of the fast multi probe technology to an existing classical planar near field facility through the manufacturing, installation and test of a partial demonstrator in Thales Alenia in Toulouse.