"vector cross-product direction-finding" with an electromagnetic vector-sensor of six orthogonally oriented but spatially noncollocating dipoles/loops

Kainam Thomas Wong, Xin Yuan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

156 Citations (Scopus)


Direction-finding capability has recently been advanced by synergies between the customary approach of inter ferometry and the new approach of 'vector cross product' based Poynting-vector estimator. The latter approach measures the incident electromagnetic wavefield for each of its six electromagnetic components, all at one point in space, to allow a vector cross-product between the measured electric-field vector and the measured magnetic-field vector. This would lead to the estimation of each incident source's Poynting-vector, which (after proper norm-normalization) would then reveal the corresponding Cartesian direction-cosines, and thus the azimuth-elevation arrival angles. Such a 'vector cross product' algorithm has been predicated on the measurement of all six electromagnetic components at one same spatial location. This physically requires an electromagnetic vector-sensor, i.e., three identical but orthogonally oriented electrically short dipoles, plus three identical but orthogonally oriented magnetically small loops-all spatially collocated in a point-like geometry. Such a complicated 'vector-antenna' would require exceptionally effective electromagnetic isolation among its six component-antennas. To minimize mutual coupling across these collocated antennas, considerable antennas-complexity and hardware cost could be required. Instead, this paper shows how to apply the 'vector cross-product' direction-of-arrival estimator, even if the three dipoles and the three loops are located separately (instead of collocating in a point-like geometry). This new scheme has great practical value, in reducing mutual coupling, in simplifying the antennas hardware, and in sparsely extending the spatial aperture to refine the direction-finding accuracy by orders of magnitude.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5595021
Pages (from-to)160-171
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Signal Processing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011


  • Antenna array mutual coupling
  • antenna arrays
  • aperture antennas
  • array signal processing
  • direction of arrival estimation
  • diversity methods
  • nonuniformly spaced arrays
  • polarization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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