FPGA-Based 2-D FIR Frost Beamformers with Digital Mutual Coupling Compensation

This paper describes a technique for de-embedding electromagnetic mutual coupling effects between nearest neighbors of a ULA receiver. Measured S-parameters across a range of frequencies of interest are used in a closed-form mathematical model that relates measured S-parameters, measured LNA reflection coefficients, and transmission line parameters to digital beamformer design equations, such that the beam shape distortions arising from mutual coupling can be compensated in the digital signal processing algorithm. A 5.8 GHz 32-element receiver array with custom receivers and 32-channel Xilinx Virtex-6 Sx35 FPGA based DSP system implementing a real-time complex-valued Frost beamformer operating at IF is proposed to show the benefits of de-embedding mutual coupling for far-field side-lobe suppression. The worst-case side-lobe level is reduced by 11.2 dB, and the average side-lobe level is reduced by 5.2 dB, for a 20 MHz IF signal.