Is That An Antenna Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?

from the amazing-shrinking-materials dept

Joe Schmoe writes in to tell us about the NY Times article about some new antenna material that should make it possible to make smaller, stronger, more powerful antennas. Anyone who’s dealt with a broken (or just plain bad) mobile phone antenna will welcome such a thing. The waya it works is mixing a metallic compound with plastic or rubber to make a conductive material that can be molded into any shape. Thus, the actual casing of the phone can be the antenna. The article also talks about a number of other cool potential uses of such a system – such as turning truck bumpers into giant antennas in order to track them.

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Comments on “Is That An Antenna Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?”

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Mick says:

Re: Extending antenna for better reception

I have seen it on my cell phone’s signal strength indicator. The signal may or may not jump up a few lines on the “meter” if I extend the antenna.

There has been discussion about R/F hazard from cell phone antenna. I wonder if making the case the antenna would be a problem in this regard seeing as how it would be closer to the user’s body.

msykes says:

Re: Re: Extending antenna for better reception

Heck, the signal on my phone jumps a few bars if I hold it sideways! mhh5’s all-knowingness aside, better antennas has to be a good thing, though I also have somewhat vague concerns about long term radiation effects.

The antenna is the one thing I dislike about the StarTac, they really need to do away with it. Or at least make a stronger, non retractable version.


Phillip says:

Extending antenna

Simply extending an antenna won’t do any good. The optimum antenna length is determined by the frequency it receives, and ideal reception is achieved by a multiple of this optimal length. The reason for the antenna on the mobile phone is as much fashion as anything else. Remember when the health scare arose? The signal strength for an electromagnetic emission drops exponentially in proportion to its distance (inverse square law) and mobile phone makes could have eliminated any potential risks of microwaving the brain by putting the antenna on the bottom of the handset instead of the top. Did they? Of course not, it doesn’t look as good. Same goes with integrating the antenna into the body, it won’t happen until the public perceive antenna-less phones as trendy.


Phillip says:

Re: Re: Little Nokia

The 8210 has an internal antenna, but it suffers from comparitively poor reception. Comparing reception is a bit of a mobile phone sport, hence it lost trendy points on that. Lack of antenna received a mixed reception (sorry) amongst my friends. I almost bought the small Nokia but was put off by the alleged poor reception.


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