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This paper presents a reconfigurable radio front-end antenna scheme suitable for cognitive radio communications. The authors' scheme comprises of an UWB antenna structure (antenna-1) and a reconfigurable antenna structure (antenna-2) incorporated together on the same substrate. The UWB antenna-1 is used for channel sensing while the reconfigurable antenna-2 is designed to frequency-hop between pre-determined communication channels. The reconfiguration of antenna-2 is achieved by using photoconductive switches which are selectively illuminated by laser light from a series of integrated laser diodes. A prototype was fabricated and tested to prove the applicability of their proposed radio front-end scheme.
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