Sparse Tiled Planar Array: The Shared Multibeam Aperture for Millimeter-Wave Joint Communication and Sensing

Hadi Alidoustaghdam*, André Kokkeler, Yang Miao

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Downloads (Pure)


Multibeam planar arrays are investigated as shared apertures for dual functionality in millimeter-wave (mmWave) joint communication and sensing (JCAS), providing time division duplex communication and full-duplex sensing with steerable beams. The conventional uniform planar arrays (CUPA)s have limited angular resolution, whereas the sparse planar arrays (SPA)s are often very costly to implement. In order to have a low-cost aperture with high angular resolution, we propose to design a sparse tiled planar array (STPA) shared aperture. Our proposed solution is modular tiling and uniform at the subarray level but sparse at the aperture level. The modular tiling and sparse design of a planar array are non-convex optimization problems; however, we exploit the fact that the more irregularity of the antenna array geometry, the less the side lobe level (SLL). In a JCAS scenario, we compare the performance of STPA, CUPA. and SPA, regarding the spectral efficiency of a line-of-sight (LoS) included communication link, detection loss rate, and detection accuracy rate for sensing, and the blockage time in case of an overlapping communication and sensing beam. The SPA for comparison has the same size and beamwidth as STPA, but less average SLL and less modular design. The results show that the same spectral efficiency is achieved in the communication link for CUPA, SPA, and STPA. The effect of a smaller beamwidth of the STPA and SPA is reflected in the lower detection loss rate of them compared to that of the CUPA, but the side lobes of these sparse solutions result in errors in the association of the detected and true targets and hence a reduction in the detection accuracy. In such a multibeam solution for JCAS, it is critical to study blockage time, and we show that the STPA and SPA have a 40% shorter blockage time compared to the CUPA when a blocker moves across the LoS of the communication link. Therefore, STPA is a trade-off solution between CUPA and SPA, since it has uniformly distributed antennas within the subarrays as in CUPA, but a sparse solution in the whole aperture as in SPA, which guarantees the same beamwidth and sensing performances as a SPA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3115
JournalElectronics (Switzerland)
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jul 2023


  • 6G
  • angle-of-arrival
  • blockage duration
  • joint communication and sensing
  • multibeam
  • shared aperture
  • sparse array
  • spectral efficiency
  • target detection
  • tiled planar array


Dive into the research topics of 'Sparse Tiled Planar Array: The Shared Multibeam Aperture for Millimeter-Wave Joint Communication and Sensing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this