Technology Transfer SSC Pacific
Wearable Ultra-Broadband Antenna

 PDF Version

Incorporates ultra-broadband antennas into garments that absorb radiation to reduce radiation hazard to the operator

The U.S. Navy seeks to commercialize a suite of patents based on U.S. Patent 6,788,262 (Ultra-broadband antenna incorporated into a garment with radiation absorber material to mitigate radiation hazard). 


Soldiers need to communicate many different types of information, including global positioning information, voice signals, video, and technical data; however, most hand-held radio antennas used by soldiers are narrowband and only provide operation over a small frequency range, lacking broadband capability. Furthermore, these traditional antennas are clumsy and tend to snag on trees and brush. They also provide a visible identifier that distinguishes the radio operator and makes them vulnerable to snipers whose main goal is to disrupt communications and control. Exposure to electromagnetic fields, dependent upon the amount of exposure, frequency, volume of body exposed, and length of time of exposure, is also a risk factor for radio operators. A broadband antenna that does not provide a visual indicator to the operator while also absorbing radiofrequency (RF) energy levels to increase operator safety is highly desirable.

The Technology

SSC Pacific has developed an ultra-broadband antenna integrated into a garment that includes radiation absorber material to minimize radiation hazards to the wearer. The antenna includes first and second RF elements that each form a band when the garment is worn by an operator. The shorting strap is electrically connected between the first and second RF elements to help match the antenna impedance to an external signal source. Radiation absorber material is then added in the region of the RF feeds and the gap, which limits the wearer’s exposure to electromagnetic fields to acceptable levels. Possible markets include wireless communication, first responders community, and law enforcement.  

Key Benefits

  • The antenna is lightweight and provides ultra wideband operation
  • Hides identity of radio operator, thereby decreasing threat from sniper fire
  • Design minimizes radiation exposure to operator
  • Developed using different materials of conductive cloth, and much larger bandwidth than any other commercially available antenna
  • Compact design minimizes physical interferences with operators
  • Development Status

  • U.S. Patents issued: 6,342,866, 6,590,540, 6,621,457, 6,788,262, 6,972,725, 6,995,723, 7,002,526, and 7,425,922
  • Total R&D: $600K and 6 years
  • DoD 5000 Series Technology Readiness Level 7: System prototype demonstration in an operational environment
  • Operational field test data results available
  • For more information on technology transfer, please contact us at (619) 5535118 or email
    SD 805, September 2008. SSC Pacific, San Diego, CA 921525001. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.

    SSC Pacific
    Updated: 10/25/2011 10:38 AM EST   Published