What are some Applications of Flexible Waveguides?

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Peter McNeil - L-com Global Connectivity

Jan 5, 2018

Flexible waveguides use mechanically and electrically interlinked metallic structures to form a hollow channel that behaves as a waveguided with enhanced flexible and somewhat reduced performance. As the interlinked metallic structures, even if soldered and crimped, are not perfectly smooth conductive walls, the performance of flexible waveguides will not likely reach that of a traditionally manufactured waveguide. That being said, the flexible nature of these waveguide allows them to be used in applications for which rigid waveguide structures may be too bulky, unfit for the complexity of the geometries, too heavy, take too long to design/assemble, or may be unavailable during emergency repairs or retrofitting operations.

Flexible waveguide are used in virtually every application that rigid waveguide are used, with the exception of extremely high power, low loss, or certain mechanical stresses are common. Waveguide systems that may require a range of adjustments, such as with satellite positioning systems, are likely to employ flexible waveguide. The bendable, and sometimes even bend/twist, nature of flexible waveguide can reduce installation difficulties from misalignments common in system installation, repair, retrofitting. Flexible waveguides can also be used to isolate different sections of waveguide and mechanical structures from vibration and shock, which a rigid waveguide interconnect would not be able to do. Lastly, a flexible waveguide could be used in structures that are likely to shift or produce relative movement during thermal cycles, movement, or intense weather.


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