Single-frequency microwave imaging with dynamic metasurface apertures

Timothy Sleasman, Michael Boyarsky, Mohammadreza F. Imani, Thomas Fromenteze, Jonah N. Gollub, David R. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Conventional microwave imaging schemes, enabled by the ubiquity of coherent sources and detectors, have traditionally relied on frequency bandwidth to retrieve range information, while using mechanical or electronic beamsteering to obtain cross-range information. This approach has resulted in complex and expensive hardware when extended to large-scale systems with ultrawide bandwidth. Relying on bandwidth can create difficulties in calibration, alignment, and imaging of dispersive objects. We present an alternative approach using electrically large, dynamically reconfigurable, metasurface antennas that generate spatially distinct radiation patterns as a function of tuning state. The metasurface antenna consists of a waveguide feeding an array of metamaterial radiators, each with properties that can be modified by applying a voltage to diodes integrated into the element. By deploying two of these apertures, one as the transmitter and one as the receiver, we realize sufficient spatial diversity to alleviate the dependence on frequency bandwidth and obtain range and cross-range information using measurements at a single frequency. We experimentally demonstrate this proposal by using two 1D dynamic metasurface apertures and reconstructing various 2D scenes (range and cross-range). Furthermore, we modify a conventional reconstruction method—the range migration algorithm—to be compatible with such configurations, resulting in an imaging system that is efficient in software and hardware. The imaging scheme presented in this paper has broad application to radio frequency imaging, including security screening, through-wall imaging, biomedical diagnostics, and synthetic aperture radar.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1713-1726
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Optical Society of America B: Optical Physics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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