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RF, Antennas, and Remote Sensing Group

The RF, Antennas, and Remote Sensing group carries out extensive research in a wide variety of topics related to the analytic, computational, and experimental aspects of electromagnetics. Application areas include wireless systems and antennas, high-speed circuits and packages, signal integrity, microwave and millimeter-wave circuits, novel electronic materials, radar, atmospheric propagation, propagation through random media, rough surface scattering, and remote sensing.

The Laboratory for Applications in Electromagnetics and Optics , directed by Professor Leung Tsang , conducts research in simulation methods for rough surface scattering, random media, and signal integrity. In particular, information about the land and ocean surface is essential in weather and climate prediction models. Passive microwave instruments on board of satellite have been used extensively for sensing of soil, oceans, and snow parameters. For many years, the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSMI) data have been widely used and more missions will be flown providing new advancements in passive microwave measurements. In these sensors, measurements will be multi-frequency and multi-polarimetric including all four Stokes parameters. Thus it is important to develop theoretical microwave models that can predict the brightness temperatures of land and ocean surfaces. Over the past decade, the lab has rigorously and extensively studied the microwave emissivities of snow, soil, oceans, and foam-covered oceans using non-classical analytic models and Monte Carlo simulations of exact solutions of Maxwell equations. Students at the laboratory rigorously study and extend these models, apply them to satellite data, and adapt the models as that they can be readily assimilated into microwave remote sensing and climate studies.

The Applied Computational Electromagnetics Research Lab , directed by Vikram Jandhyala , comprises of 8 PhD students funded by NSF, DARPA, SRC, and industrial sources. The focus of the ACE lab is towards developing efficient computational methods for electromagnetic simulation and interfacing these methods with other disciplines such as device physics, circuit simulation, and communication system modeling. These methods require a combination of applied mathematics and fast algorithms, underlying physics formulations and methods, computer graphics and geometry manipulation, and interfaces to circuit theory and signal processing. In particular, fast analysis tools and methodologies have been developed for the simulation of high-speed circuits and systems, coupled multi-physics simulation for mixed-technology chips, time and frequency domain modeling of scattering from large structures and objects, novel electromagnetic material modeling, and wireless propagation and channel prediction.

The Radar Remote Sensing Laboratory , directed by John Sahr , has completed its second full year of 24/7 operations of the Manastash Ridge Radar. During this time, Melissa Meyer, Andrew Morabito, Hasan Mir, Matt Grossman, and John Sahr have collected about 13,000 echoes from turbulence near the Northern Lights above Northeast Washington, Idaho, British Columbia, and Alberta. This radar listens very carefully to the echoes of commercial FM broadcasts near 100 MHz. By comparing the signals arriving on several antennas we can deduce the direction and size of the echoes (which occur at altitude of 110 km). The Radar Remote Sensing Laboratory is supported by the National Science Foundation, with additional support from NATO and Lincoln Laboratory

The Electromagnetics Laboratory , directed by Yasuo Kuga and Akira Ishimaru , has been involved in analytical, experimental and numerical studies of wave interaction with random media. The past work includes laser propagation in the atmosphere, remote sensing of the planetary atmosphere, medical optics and medical imaging, microwave imaging through the atmosphere, and photon localization in distorted media. Recent work is focused on object detection in a complex environment such as the ocean surface or terrain, probing and remote sensing of the earth atmosphere, and study of new metamaterials such as negative index media. These projects are sponsored by the NSF, and ONR. The lab has extensive material characterization and antenna measurement systems up to 110 GHz which have been used for designing antennas for academic institutions and companies.

At the Applied Physics Laboratory , Dale Winebrenner's work concerns the physics of light of radio waves and the exploration of icy environments based on that physics. Current projects include: (1) radar sounding of structure within and beneath the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, the Martian polar caps, and ice shells on three Galilean moons of Jupiter; (2) optical probing for biological molecules within ice such as the floating sea ice cap on the Arctic Ocean; and (3) microwave observation of ice sheet surface temperatures and mass accumulation rates. These projects are sponsored by the NSF and NASA.

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