Microwave Journal

Low Loss Circulators for UHF, L-, S-, C- and X-Band AESAs

June 12, 2019

Active electronically scanned arrays (AESA) have proven to be the superior architecture for airborne, ship and ground-based radar. In addition to improved reliability and dynamic beam steering - with multiple beams at different frequencies - AESAs have low probability of intercept, are resistant to jamming and can simultaneously provide functions beyond radar, such as data links.

Achieving the maximum system performance from an AESA requires the best circulator performance. System engineers are always pushing for higher output power during transmit and better sensitivity during receive, within severely constrained size and weight budgets, and the circulator’s insertion loss and power handling are key parameters setting the radar’s range and overall system efficiency. As AESA radars typically employ thousands of T/R modules, unit-to-unit variability and low cost are also key criteria.

M Wave Design’s engineering team has successfully developed many small, high-power circulators for AESA radar systems. Designed for high-volume manufacturing with minimal assembly labor, they are cost-effective and have repeatable performance, high-power handling and low insertion loss, to help maximize the dynamic range of the radar. M Wave Design’s current products cover the common radar bands at UHF, L-, S-, C- and X-Band and achieve a small footprint for the operating frequency band.

AESA circulators are one example of M Wave Design’s capabilities. During more than 30 years designing and manufacturing passive waveguide and coaxial components, including high- power ferrite products, M Wave has developed a unique set of tools and heritage to solve challenging technical issues, using some of the most innovative design techniques available.

M Wave Design
Simi Valley, Calif.