For antennas used for communications in cell phones and satellites, transmission and reception happen either one-at-a-time (in a single channel) or simultaneously (but in two different frequency channels). Circuits known as circulators allow simultaneous transmission and reception in a single channel. But state-of-the-art circulators are made with large magnets that make them impractical to miniaturize onto a microchip as they are too bulky for some applications like cell phones.
Here, a single antenna could be used to send and receive signals. A micro-chip scale circulator circuit was designed that allows transmission and reception to happen at the same time and in a single channel, doubling the bandwidth of the communication system without the use of magnets. These new circulators would be compatible with standard silicon fabrication techniques and allow them to be built directly into the circuitry of a communication system.
These devices could be integrated into cell phones, cell base stations, or satellites, doubling the amount of information that can be sent or received in a given time. This invention has many uses across the aerospace and telecommunications industry.