Scientists have created the antenna of molten alloy, which is controlled by the applied voltage on it. They assume that their antenna can find applications in future mobile devices, particularly the iPhone.
The researchers found that depending on the applied voltage between the electrolyte and the liquid metal, the latter begins to move and change its height in the channel. This allowed the authors to use the metal as a managed antenna. Scientists have managed to set it on the operating frequency and to obtain a directional pattern.
As the liquid metal, the scientists used a eutectic alloy containing 75% gallium and 25% indium. The application of a small positive voltage would cause the alloy to flow into the capillary and increased the height of the antenna, while negative reduced her.
As noted by scholars, if a positive voltage as a result of electrochemical reactions on the surface of the alloy occurred oxides, which reduced its surface tension. Negative voltage oxides recovered (gallium and indium oxides ceased to exist, and metals in the alloy was without oxygen), and the surface tension of the alloy increased. This led to the decrease in the area of free surface of liquid of the antenna. Such differences in surface tension depending on the applied voltage and the determined direction of the metal flow, said Lenta.
The authors in the future are going to continue our studies of liquid antennas. In particular, they are interested in rate of change form a liquid alloy and the creation is not a one-dimensional antenna, and two-dimensional. In the latter case, the alloy flowed not through the channel, and on the plane.
Scientists claim that their development could solve the problem with the signal in iPhone 4, associated with the dependence of the quality of communication from his position in the hand of the user. The results of their research, the authors published in the Journal of Applied Physics, and briefly they can be found on the website of the publisher American Institute of physics.