Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

Analysis and Design of Helical Antenna for Capture of Meteorological Images of NOAA Satellites

(*) Corresponding author

Authors' affiliations



This article presents the design, the characterization and the construction of a helical antenna in axial mode to receive weather images of Colombia transmitted from NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) satellites. The antenna has been located in Bogota (latitude: 4°36'34''N, longitude: 74°04'54''W; 25822 m above sea level), it has received Automatic Picture Transmission (APT) signals of good quality with circular polarization on the right (RHCP); those ones have been fed to a sharp SDR (generic software RTL-SDR) and decoded through the WXtoImg software in the receiver. In order to improve the performance of the antenna, the helix has been built with a coaxial cable of 0.0047λ diameter (RG-213 / U), the length of the feed cable has been minimized to 55 cm, (less than λ/2), and an impedance coupling network using a series stub has been designed. The physical design has represented an important aspect, since some wrong dimensions have caused distortions in the received signal. The experimental results show radiation diagrams with a gain of eight dBi and bandwidth of 30 kHz with respect to 3dB at the central frequency of 137 MHz, which are comparable with the simulations and theoretical analysis. With the above, the design of the circuit is validated; it guarantees its performance and confirms the practical utility of the antenna.
Copyright © 2018 Praise Worthy Prize - All rights reserved.


Circular Polarization; Helical Antenna; NOAA Satellites; Weather Images

Full Text:



Block J., Bäger A., Behrens J., Delovski T., Hauer L., Schütze M., Spröwitz T., A self-deploying and self-stabilizing helical antenna for small satellites, 61st International Astronautical Congress 2010, IAC 2010, 3: 1966-1971.

Rodríguez J. S., Wide band quadrifilar helical antenna for instrumentation, M. Sc. dissertation, Dept. Elect. Eng., Pontificia Universidad Javeriana Bogotá, Colombia, 2013, Page 52.

Valdés J. C., Stable Sánchez Y., Cimino L., antenna for earth stations of polar orbiting weather satellites, EAC [online], January-April, 2015. 36(1): 79-94. Available in:

Alvarez C. W., Design and construction of a Double Cross antenna for reception of images from polar orbiting satellites. M. Sc. dissertation, Dept. Elect. Eng., Pontificia Universidad de Cataluña, Barcelona, España, 2015, page 151. Online, Available in:

Young M. Design and testing of helical antennas for a RF test facility. PhD dissertation, Dept. Elect. Eng., University of Missouri-Columbia, 2012.

Ghayem F., Rassaei F., Helical antenna to measure radiated power density around a BTS: Design and implementation, 3rd Asia-Pacific Conference on Antennas and Propagation (APCAP), 2014: 185-188

Balanis C. A., Antenna Theory: Analysis and Design. Third Edition. Wiley, New York, 2005, Page 514.

Kraus J. D., Marhefka R. J.. Antennas for all applications. Third Edition. Mc Graw Hill, New York, 2002. pp. 173-213.

King H. E., Wong J. L., Newman E. H., Helical Antennas, in: Volakis J. L. (Ed.), Antenna Engineering Handbook, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2007.

Sophisticated Helix Antenna Design®. Online, Available in: Consulted on September 25, 2017.

Alsawaha H., Safaai-Jazi A., A new technique for bandwidth improvement and size reduction of helical antennas. Microwave and Optical Technology Letters, 2011, 53(12): 2990-2994.

Wu T. T., King R. W., The tapered antennas and its applications to the junction problems for thin wires. IEEE transactions on antennas and propagations, 1976, AP-24 (1): 42-46.

Cass S. A 40 software-defined radio. IEEE Spectrum, 2013, 50(7): 22-23.

Cai R., Lin S., Wang L., Wang J., Lü Y., Huang G., Wang J., Design and experiment of a high gain axial-mode helical antenna. International Conference on Communication Technology Proceedings, ICCT, 2010: 522-525.

Caillet M., Clénet M., Sharaiha A., Antar Y. M., A broadband folded printed quadrifilar helical antenna employing a novel compact planar feeding circuit. IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation, 58(7), 2010: 2203-2209.

Abbasiniazare S., Forooraghi K., Torabi A., Manoochehri O. Mutual coupling compensation for a 1×2 short helical antenna array using split-ring resonators. Electromagnetics, 2013, 33(1): 1-9.

Uengtrakul B., Bunnjaweht D,. A cost efficient software defined radio receiver for demonstrating concepts in communication and signal processing using python and RTL-SDR. 4th International Conference on Digital Information and Communication Technology and its Applications, DICTAP 2014, UTCC: Bangkok, Thailand: 394-399.

Dascal V., Dolea P., Cristea O., Palade T., Advanced VHF ground station for NOAA weather satellite APT image reception, Acta Technica Napocensis, 53(3), 2012.

Sewards A., Interference to APT Satellite Reception, Online, Available in: Consulted on September 25, 2017.

Chitambara Rao, K., Mallikarjuna Rao, P., Design, Simulation and Experiment of a Backfire Bifilar Helix Antenna for Use in S-Band Communication with a Lower Earth Orbit Satellite, (2017) International Journal on Communications Antenna and Propagation (IRECAP), 7 (7), pp. 594-602.

Gherdaoui, S., Fizazi, H., Hybrid Approach for the Detection of Regions of a Satellite Image, (2017) International Review of Aerospace Engineering (IREASE), 10 (3), pp. 114-121.

Hannane, A., Fizazi, H., Metaheuristics and Neural Network for Satellite Images Classification, (2016) International Review of Aerospace Engineering (IREASE), 9 (4), pp. 107-113.

Duong, M., Dolara, A., Grimaccia, F., Mussetta, M., Zich, R., Le, K., Hybrid Structure and Fuzzy Logic High Precision Control for Non-Geostationary Satellite Antenna Tracking, (2015) International Journal on Communications Antenna and Propagation (IRECAP), 5 (5), pp. 290-296.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Please send any question about this web site to
Copyright © 2005-2024 Praise Worthy Prize