Liquid Metal Antenna
In our cable and satellite driven world, few people outside the realm of HAM radio enthusiasts understand much about how antenna theory works. Yet, as our connections become increasingly wireless, antennas are becoming more important than ever.
Radio boffins know that the electrical length of resonant antennas (the most common type of antenna in use) will provide the greatest efficiency at an odd multiple of one-quarter the wavelength of the frequency in use. Antennas may have a different physical length to account for a variety of electrical factors, but at some level, the size of the antenna will have some rough correspondence to the wavelength at which it performs most efficiently and the pattern around which it radiates.
This has presented an obstacle in a variety of modern applications, where size and convenience clash with the most efficient size and shape of antenna. Variable length antennas, both manual and automatic, have been used, but introduce additional moving parts or the inconvenience of manual configuration to antenna systems which reduce their reliability.
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