New miniPCI Antenna Doubles Range

By Eric Griffith

October 16, 2002

Ethertronics announces a new diversity antenna module in miniPCI form, clarifies their 802.11 offerings, and busts into a rapidly growing overseas manufacturing market.

San Diego, CA-based Ethertronics continues to roll out new antennas for the wireless market, including cellular, Bluetooth, wireless LAN, even global positioning systems. This week they announced a miniPCI diversity antenna module, part of their recently renamed TrueNet line of antennas for 802.11-based network products.

Ethertronics's WLAN antenna line for client devices (which supports not just 802.11a or b, but also HomeRF and HiperLAN/2) is now called TrueNet. The line consists of the PureNet 2.4GHz internal antennas and this new DualNet miniPCI (MPCI) module (which uses the company's GY antennas).

The DualNet MPCI is, as the name suggests, a dual-band antenna for 802.11a (in the 5.150-5.825 GHz frequency bands) and 802.11b (in the 2.400-2.485 GHz bands) networks. Ethertronics says its patented field shaping technology, which they now call Isolated Magnetic Dipole (IMD), will double the range of existing internal antennas.

Dr. Gregory Poilasne, Technical Leader at Ethertronics, says that whereas an antenna in a PC Card NIC usually has at least the advantage of sticking out of a laptop, with an embedded miniPCI module, the antenna could be situated in the worst place on the system for signal propagation. "For optimization, you don't want it to be underneath... The ideal position is on the lid," says Poilasne. "The antenna is flexible of where it can be implemented."

The DualNet MPCI features a spatial diversity solution with two isolated antennas. Isolating them (even on a signal band antenna) prevents electromagnetic leakage to other components and thereby improves performance.

Ethertronics also announced this week a deal with Professional Computer Technology Limited (PCT Ltd.) of Taiwan, which will market Ethertronics entire antenna technology line, from WLAN to handset antennas, to Taiwanese manufacturers. More than 60% of notebooks sold in the world are made in Taiwan according to Taiwan-based research firm THT Market Intelligence. In August the antenna maker announced a similar deal with Techmove Electronics in Korea.

Eric Griffith is the managing editor of 802.11 Planet.

802.11 Planet Conference Wondering how new antenna technology can impact or improve your WLAN? Join us at the 802.11 Planet Conference & Expo, Dec. 3-5 in Santa Clara, CA. One of our sessions will includes speakers from Ethertronics and other companies talking about Optimizing WLAN Coverage with High-Performance Antennas.

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