Intellectual Ventures has the world’s leading portfolio of metamaterials intellectual property, thanks in part to work with pioneers in the field. After almost a decade of development in this area, including two-years of technical development inside IV Lab, IV launched a spin-out company – Kymeta Corporation – to commercialize the metamaterials satellite antenna.
In 2010, a team at IV Lab began work on the early stage development of the Metamaterials Surface Antenna Technology (MSA-T). MSA-T uses tunable metamaterial elements to steer a radio frequency (RF) beam and keep it aimed at a satellite. The technology requires no moving parts or phase shifters. Instead, it relies on thousands of miniature patterns printed on a circuit board. An RF signal is propagated along the surface of the elements, which are selectively activated by software to scatter the energy in a desired direction. This RF beam can be steered in real time to maintain a satellite connection, and the technology’s compact form means that it can be placed on just about anything.
Now that the design and test prototyping phase is complete, Kymeta, will take the MSA-T project on to commercialization and full-scale product development. Kymeta’s mTenna product line simplifies the connection needed for broadband internet on the go, anywhere in the world. Using MSA-T, mTenna can electronically point and steer a radio signal toward a satellite. This provides a continuous broadband link between a satellite and a moving platform such as an aircraft, car or boat.
A dedicated team of scientists and engineers at IV Lab performed significant research and early stage development to de-risk the technology behind the Metamaterials Surface Antenna Technology. After two years of design and text prototyping inside IV Lab, Kymeta Corporation was formed to commercialize the project.
The Instrument Shop allows IV Lab to develop ideas quickly from concept through to manufacture and testing.
The Electronics Lab houses a wide selection of specialized equipment and software for prototype fabrication and analysis.