Terahertz Beam Steering Concept Based on a MEMS-Reconfigurable Reflection Grating

With an increasing number of applications of terahertz systems in industrial fields and communications, terahertz beamforming and beam steering techniques are required for high-speed, large-area scanning. As a promising means for beam steering, micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS)-based reflection gratings have been successfully implemented for terahertz beam control. So far, the diffraction grating efficiency is relatively low due to the limited vertical displacement range of the reflectors. In this paper, we propose a design for a reconfigurable MEMS-based reflection grating consisting of multiple subwavelength reflectors which are driven by 5-bit, high-throw electrostatic actuators. We vary the number of the reflectors per grating period and configure the throw of individual reflectors so that the reflection grating is shaped as a blazed grating to steer the terahertz beam with maximum diffraction grating efficiency. Furthermore, we provide a mathematical model for calculating the radiation pattern of the terahertz wave reflected by general reflection gratings consisting of subwavelength reflectors. The calculated and simulated radiation patterns of the designed grating show that we can steer the angle of the terahertz waves in a range of up to ± 56.4 ∘ with a maximum sidelobe level of −10 dB at frequencies from 0.3 THz to 1 THz.


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