Even so, less visible antennas are buried in doors, inside bumpers and behind glass. These hidden antennas crisscross through the vehicle, creating an expensive and often unreliable web of cables in the car. With the proliferation of new antennas and radio services, now is the time to simplify automotive antenna technology to control cost, improve reliability and performance, and enhance vehicle aesthetics and aerodynamics.
The Antenna Challenge
Today, a new class of antennas called conformal antennas are here to solve the challenge. A conformal antenna is a multiband integrated antenna that conforms with the body A-surface, meaning there are no elements that stick out of the body. Like your mobile phone, conformal antennas are buried in the electronics, below the body surface and help avoid the unsightly radiator elements as well as the inefficiency and added cost of cables. It consolidates many antennas into a single device.
Shark Fin Antenna
More than 8-10 technologies:
4xLTE, 2xBT / WiFi, Multi GNSS, SDARS, 1xV2X
5 technologies at best:
2xLTE, 1xBT / WiFi, 1xGNSS, 1xSDARS
Integration of 8-14 antennas in one place
Exterior car design:
Antenna concealment on the roof
Radiation pattern at low elevation angle
Flows with the design of the car
Minimum break in design flow of the exterior of the vehicle
Breaks the design flow:
With increasing complexity, it only gets bigger and/or more in number
It looks dated
To date, antenna design has been an afterthought. Communication systems are prioritized first, then the antenna is designed to meet the communication system requirements and to conform to the design of the vehicle itself. As a leading tier-1 automotive supplier, HARMAN is utilizing conformal antenna technology to change the way its OEM partners think about antennas and is dedicated to improving the overall in-vehicle experience for drivers and riders.
To learn more, watch, “We're All Ears for No Shark Fins—Conformal Antenna Webinar," on-demand and hear from a panel of telematics experts about smart conformal antennas.
Senior Director, Global Content & Digital Marketing at HARMAN International
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