There are many multi-band antennas available to choose from today, but most of them suffer as compromises that result in less than optimal performance. The concept here is to create an self-tuning wire Yagi for HF with more elements than typical HF Yagi's and do so at a lower cost, drastically lower weight and wind load.
I realize there are a lot of folks in this community who have decades more experience than I do with antenna design and ham radio in general. Any feedback, concerns and ideas would be greatly appreciated. The intent here is to move the state of the art forward, which is why I'm giving this information away freely vs. attempting to commercialize it as one might have otherwise done.
Details are available on my blog for anyone interested in learning more about "The BatBeam" concept.
If this type of community service post is unsuitable or inappropriate to share here for any reason, please accept my apologies in advance. Otherwise, I hope this is helpful for us all.
However it sure looks like a blatant copy of a SteppIR antenna except that you are proposing more modern micro controllers rather than the discrete components that SteppIR uses and a slight variation using wire rather than tape. Albeit the portable SteppIR uses wire.
I would suggest that before you ge too far into this that you do a patent search as I am pretty sure that the SteepIR Ham Antenna US patents cover your proposed design.
I wouldn't give up so soon. Patent infringement is a consideration only when there is commerce involved with the method or apparatus that is patented. I can sit in my basement and make exact copies of SteppIR antennas and give them away to others as long as they, or I, do not profit in any way from the antennas.
So if your goal is only to "move the state of the art forward", then by all means, press ahead. If, however, you solicit donations from the same website that hosts this project, then maybe you should have a conversation with a lawyer.
You will want to be picky about selecting a firm that can do a good job, and not just give you lip service in order to get billable hours. But if you are really passionate about this idea, why not see if you can make it your own and YOU can get rich off of it. Start your own company - sell YOUR patent to another and take the money and run. Build a prototype and see how it works - maybe pay some software house to make code for your controller so it will be independent.
Yeah ! Go for it ! There are a few guys in Seattle and San Francisco that wrote some code, maybe grab some belonging to others and now they have quite a few dollars in the bank. Its your turn !
Cheers - and have a few pints to get started . . .
i have exactly what you need , i run my stepIR whit my own electronic / software ;-)
that arduino compatible whit Spare GPIO and ADC input ,and of course opensource
use only 4 wire GND +24V and 2wire for RS485 , mat daisy chain up to 64 device
now on my shack i have a StepIR ,3 rotator and a antenna switch all on same 4 wire
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP8hGX4AMn0 lot less noise that original box
Once I get a response and decision, will update.
Thanks for everyone's perspectives. We will see if this turns out to be a go/no-go soon enough.
I'm already working on alternatives to physically changing the wire length and have come up with two alternatives already. Parts are on order to build prototypes. It will take more that some patents to kill this idea. Once I have a functioning prototype and have filed provisionals, will share with everyone.
Thanks again for the feedback and encouragement. Email me to discuss details ... rick at W5FCX dot net.
that not stop Nikon /Sony and all other to make camera ,same for smart-phone
so if you do dipole/vertical whit perforated copper berilium tape and stepper motor that may bad idea
but if you do something else example : loop antenna whit round wire wly not ?
if you look StepIR was also not the first to make electric tunable antenna ,so that limit claim about that ,so remain how SpepIR actually do this
this remember a friend that learn hard-way that dime a LED whit a PWM was patent of colorkinetic
that have bigger legal dep that R&D ,but end to change it design for drive let whit switching power supply chip ,since pulse train was result of chip load regulation it no more technically a "PWM"
but as said i really not a layer
Given the potential patent-related issues and prior art associated with physically lengthening/shortening the antenna elements to achieve multi-band resonance, I was forced to head down a different path...
They say "necessity is the mother of invention". So instead of doing the obvious and manipulating the physical antenna element lengths, I decided to shift focus onto methods to electrically alter the lengths to achieve resonance - boy am I glad that I did, as it helped me break through.
The new, Rev 1 design employs "J-Boxes", little nodes that sit between each segment of conductor (e.g., wire) that carriers the RF signal. To switch between bands, the antenna length is altered by simply switching the proper conductive segments on/off (open/closed). This means it should be possible to retune the antenna in a matter of milliseconds, with no moving parts! The switching will be done with either relays or PIN diodes. I hope the PIN diodes work out, because that's the most elegant and lightest design.
The Rev 1 proposal is now available:
As promised, the BatBeam invention and related Relay-switched Antenna invention have both been released into the public domain as of today, so we can all benefit from whatever advances this may lead us toward in the future.
Over the coming weeks, I will be constructing the prototypes and will share the results on my blog.
Thanks again for the encouragement and support. Very glad I didn't give up!
Rick / W5FCX
It was a fun project and R&D. Heck, that’s the point of ham radio isn’t it?