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Ultra-wideband (UWB) radiation is characterized by wide bandwidth relative to the center frequency of the radiated spectrum. Some documents define UWB radiation as any radiation in which the 3 dB bandwidth of the radiation is at least 25% of its center frequency.

So there are two factors that drive the UWB concept: (1) very wide bandwidth at (2) a relatively low center frequency. The wide bandwidth leads to fine time resolution and a measure of covertness in a well-designed system. The low center frequency, if low enough, will give UWB radiation a chance to penetrate many materials, providing a functionality that would not be present in a system of comparable bandwidth at a significantly higher center frequency. These characteristics point to the niche markets where UWB systems will most likely make significant inroads.

The Ultra-Wideband Radio Laboratory (UltRa Lab) was formed in 1996 to promote the study of ultra-wideband radio technology. The objective of the Ultra Lab facilities is to provide infrastructure for the following activities:

  1. Measurement of UWB radio propagation characteristics
  2. Custom chip and circuit design of UWB systems
  3. Design and testing for UWB antennas
  4. Head-to-head testing of UWB and other radio systems
  5. Mutual Interference testing of UWB and other radio systems
  6. Integration of compression and adaptive processing techniques into UWB systems
The capabilities of the UltRa Lab increased significantly with the opening in 2001 of the Paul G. Allen Wireless Test Facility, an R.F. anechoic chamber. While remaining true to its original UWB research goals, the UltRa Lab also provides a facility for the design and test of other novel means of communication.



Dr. Robert Scholtz
Professor of Electrical Engineering
University of Southern California
Los Angeles, CA 90089-2565

phone: (213) 740-7327
fax: (213) 740-8729
e-mail: scholtz@usc.edu

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