Dually Electrically Tunable 3-D Compact RF Phase Shifter


Reference #01302


The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for a Dually Electrically Tunable 3-D Compact RF Phase Shifter



The wireless communication market has been growing faster and faster in recent years, and the demand for supporting multiband and standards is ever-increasing. To achieve multifunctional and frequency-agile systems for modern and next generation wireless applications, compact tunable devices are pivotal.


Invention Description:

The invention is an electrically tunable radio frequency phase shifter with a compact 3-D structure. The phase of the device can be tuned by fully electrical methods without any integration issues. The device has dual tunability, which not only greatly increases the tuning range and design flexibility, but also enables the impedance can be kept constant the phase is tuned in a wide range.


Potential Applications:

This tunable phase shifter can be used to construct tunable phase array antennas, beam forming networks, and other reconfigurable wireless communication systems.


Advantages and Benefits:

1. The tuning method is simple and flexible. For most conventional implementations utilizing ferromagnetic materials, external biasing magnetic field is needed for tuning which is generally bulky, noisy, and consumes high power. Moreover, the dual tuning method significantly increases the design flexibility and tuning range.

2. The tunable phase shifter is highly integratable while being significantly miniaturized. The phase shifter is constructed with a unique 3-D configuration, and DC current and DC voltage are directly applied between two ports of the device and between one port and ground, respectively, so no extra components or biasing network are needed.

3. The tunable phase shifter has dual tunability. The tunable phase shifter has both inductive and capacitive tunability, which significantly increases the phase tuning range and operational efficiency.

4. The tunable phase shifter has the unique capability of characteristic impedance retaining, which is extremely important in maintaining high RF performance for wireless communication systems. By carefully selecting electrical biasing conditions when phase is tuned, the characteristic impedance of the device can be kept constant, effectively eliminating impedance mismatch and extra loss.

5. High reliability. The ferromagnetic and ferroelectric materials utilized in the design are Permalloy and PZT, respectively, which have good mechanical properties and stability.

6. The proposed method is flexible for designing arbitrary tunable RF components.


Patent Information:
Title App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Expire Date Patent Status
Dually Electrically Tunable 3-D Compact RF Phase Shifter Utility United States 16/255,924 11,594,797 1/24/2019     Published
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
Guoan Wang
Tengxing Wang
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