US 3914861 A
A corrugated microwave horn or the like is constructed by forming a plurality of thin, parallel, annular plates of conductive metal with a multiplicity of integral tabs spaced around the periphery of each plate. A thin flat sheet of flexible conductive metal is formed with a multiplicity of spaced parallel slots arranged in a multiplicity of longitudinal columns and transverse rows. One of the tabs on each of the annular plates is fitted through the slots in one of the longitudinal columns, and a wire is inserted through apertures in the tabs to lock the slotted sheet to the annular plates. The slotted sheet is then rolled around the peripheries of the plates to fit successive tabs through the successive longitudinal columns of slots, and additional wires are inserted through the apertures in successive tabs to lock the sheet to successive portions of the peripheries of the plates. To provide a continuous electrical connection between the rolled sheet and the peripheries of the annular plates, the entire assembly may be soldered together by simply coating the outer surface of the assembly with a paste solder and then heating it. The tabs may be formed on the inner peripheries rather than the outer peripheries of the plate members, and the slotted sheet formed of resilient metal so that it is biased against the inner peripheries of the plate members without the use of any wires or other longitudinal locking members.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 Phillips 11] 3,914,861 Oct. 28, 1975 CORRUGATED MICROWAVE HORNS AND THE LIKE  Inventor: James P. Phillips, Lockport, Ill.
 Assignee: Andrew Corporation, Orland Park,
 Filed: Sept. 16, I974  Appl. No.: 506,168
 US. Cl. 29/600; 29/l57.3 A; 29/471.3; 29/502; 29/526; 165/182; 333/95 R  Int. Cl. 343 786; H01? 11/00  Field of Search 29/600, 157.3 A,'428, 450, 29/457, 460, 470.7, 471.3, 502, 526, 202 R,
Primary ExaminerC. W. Lanham Assistant Examiner.loseph A. Walkowski Attorney, Agent, or F irmWolfe, Hubbard, Leydig, Voit & Osann, Ltd.
lull/ll [5 7] ABSTRACT A corrugated microwave horn or the like is constructed by forming a plurality of thin, parallel, annular plates of conductive metal with a multiplicity of integral tabs spaced around the periphery of each plate. A thin flat sheet of flexible conductive metal is formed with a multiplicity of spaced parallel slots arranged in a multiplicity of longitudinal columns and transverse rows. One of the tabs on each of the annular plates is fitted through the slots in one of the longitudinal columns, and a wire is inserted through apertures in the tabs to lock the slotted sheet to the annular plates. The slotted sheet is then rolled around the peripheries of the plates to fit successive tabs through the successive longitudinal columns of slots, and additional wires are inserted through the apertures in successive tabs to lock the sheet to successive portions of the peripheries of the plates. To provide a continuous electrical connection between the rolled sheet and the peripheries of the annular plates, the entire assembly may be soldered together by simply coating the outer surface of the assembly with a paste solder and then heating it. The tabs may be formed on the inner peripheries rather than the outer peripheries of the plate members, and the slotted sheet formed of resilient metal so that it is biased against the inner peripheries of the plate members without the use of any wires or other longitudinal locking members.
I 9 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures U.S. Patem 0m. 28, 1975 Sheet 1 of 2 US. Patent Oct. 28, 1975 Sheet2 0f2 3,914,861
CORRUGATED MICROWAVE HORNS AND THE LIKE DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to corrugated microwave horns and the like and, more particularly, to a new construction for such corrugated horns and the like which greatly simplifies their manufacture.
Corrugated horns have been known and used as feed horns for microwave antennas for several years. These horns are usually corrugated" only on the inside surface, i.e., they have a number of transverse ribs on the inside surface of the horn, these ribs being spaced apart by grooves or slots. The depth of the corrugations represents a sufficient fraction of the wavelength of the transmitted electromagnetic energy to constitute an impedance surface which has major effects on the transmission, particularly with respect to propagated and suppressed transmission modes or field patterns. There are normally at least two slots per wavelength along the length of the horn, so the total number of corrugations in any given horn is relatively large.
Heretofore, corrugated microwave horns have generally been fabricated by conventional machining, welding and/or casting techniques. The use of these tech niques has made the corrugated horns costly to manufacture and has also made such manufacture a relatively slow process. Furthermore, these conventional methods of fabrication have required the horn and the various parts thereof to have sufficient thickness to allow for the stress of machining and/or for the flow of molten metal during casting. As a result, the final horn contains considerably more metal than is required for the horn to perform its intended function, i.e., the transmission of microwaves. Because of the well known skin effect phenomenon, the high frequency electric currents carried by such a horn flow along the surface of the horn, sothe horn can be extremely thin and still carry the necessary current. In fact, the thicker metal is not only unnecessary, but also is undesirable because in many cases it introduces greater losses than are incurred with thinner metal and requires the use of stronger and more expensive mounting and supporting structures. 7
It is, therefore, a primary object of the present invention to provide an improved construction for corrugated microwave horns which permits the use of metal which is substantially thinner than required by other fabrication techniques. A more specific object of the 1 invention is to provide such an improved construction which permits the use of metal only a few thousandths of an inch thick.
A related object of the invention is to provide an improved construction for corrugated microwave horns of the foregoing type which permits the fabrication of horns which are much lighter in weight than corrugated horns made heretofore. In this connection, another re lated object of the invention is to provide such a con struction which requires less expensive mounting and supporting structures because of the lighter weight of the corrugated horn.
It is another object of the invention to provide such an improved construction for corrugated microwave horns which permits the horns to be fabricated in a fraction of the time required to fabricate the same horns by conventional fabricating techniques.
5 ject of the invention is to provide such a construction which requires only a minimal capital investment to fabricate the horns, so that it is feasible to fabricate a relatively small number of such horns at any given facility.
Still another object of the invention is to provide such an improved corrugated microwave horn construction which ensures accurate spacing, orientation and positioning of the various parts of the horn without the use of any special fixtures during fabrication of the horn.
A still further object of the invention is to provide such an improved corrugated microwave horn construction which permits relatively long horns to be made at a reasonable cost and a reasonable weight, so that it becomes more feasible to use longer horns to reduce phase error.
Yet another object of the invention is to provide an improved construction for tubular articles other than microwave horns that have a number of corrugations or the like spaced along their axes, such as heat exchanger tubes and the like.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following detailed description together with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 6 is an exploded perspective view of a modified I embodiment of the invention.
While the invention will be described in connection with certain preferred embodiments, it will be understood that it is not intended to limit the invention to those particular embodiments. On the contrary, it is intended to cover all alternatives, modifications and equivalent arrangements as may be included within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.
Tuming now to the drawings and referring first to FIG. 1, there is shown a flared corrugated microwave horn having a frustoconical shell 10 with a multiplicity of parallel transverseribs or plates 11 spaced at equal longitudinal intervals along the inner surface of the shell 10. These plates 11 are all of equal radial width and lie in planes perpendicular to the axis of the shell 10. A flared microwave horn of the type illustrated is normally used as a feed horn for a microwave antenna, such as a parabolic dish-type antenna. Although the horn is commonly referred to as a feed horn, it obviously functions as a part of the antenna system in both the sending and receiving modes. Although the art and will not be dwelled upon here. The present invention is not concerned with a horn intended for any specific application or intended to'meet any specific performance criteria, but rather is directed to a new construction which is generally applicable to corrugated horns regardless of their particular shape, the number of corrugations, the slot corrugation width, the corrugation depth, etc.
In accordance with one important aspect of the present invention, the horn shell is formed from a thin flat sheet of flexible conductive metal having a multiplicity of spaced slots arranged in longitudinal columns and transverse rows, and the annular plates 11 are formed with a multiplicity of integral tabs spaced around the periphery of each plate with each tab having an aperture therethrough. Then the horn is assembled by fitting one of the tabs on each of the plates through the slots in a selected longitudinal column, inserting a wire through the apertures of those tabs to lock the slotted sheet to the annular plates, rolling the sheet around the peripheries of the plates to fit successive tabs through successive longitudinal columns of slots, and inserting wires through the apertures in successive tabs to lock the sheet to successive portions of the peripheries of the annular plates. Thus, as shown most clearly in FIG. 3, the shell 10 initially comprises a thin flat sheet 12 of flexible conductive metal in the shape of an annular segment so that when it is rolled about an axis 14 equidistant from its non-parallel edges, it forms the desired frustoconical horn. While the sheet 12 is still flat, a multiplicity of slots 13 are formed therethrough in a multiplicity of longitudinal columns 13a and parallel transverse rows 13b. The columns and rows of slots 13 are arranged so that when the sheet 12 is rolled into the shape of the frustoconical horn, the'slots 13 are arranged in a series of circumferential rows lying in planes which are perpendicular to the axis of the horn and equally spaced around the circumferenc'e of the horn. Thus, in the case of the sheet 12 illustrated for forming the frustoconical horn 10, the transverse rows 13b lie on arcs having different radii, and both the width of the slots and the transverse spacing between the slots in successive rows gradually increases from the shorter curved edge 12a of the sheet 12 toward the longer curved edge 12b to maintain the longitudinal alignment of the slots in each of the columns 13a,
For the purpose of fastening the annular plates 11 to the sheet 12 in precisely predetermined positions relative to each other and the sheet 12, while at the same time facilitating formation of the sheet 12 into the frustoconical sheel 10, each of the plates 11 forms a multiplicity of tabs 15 around its outer periphery. The number of tabs 15 is equal to the number of slots 13 in each transverse row 13b, taking into account the fact that one of the slots in each row is formed by the overlapping of two open-ended partial slots 13 formed in the two non-parallel straight edges of the sheet 12. To ensure that each tab 15 can be fully inserted in its corresponding slot 13 so that the sheet 12 butts against the periphery of the corresponding plate 11 in the spaces between the tabs, the transverse dimensions of the slots 13 are made slightly longer than the transverse dimensions of the bases of the tabs 15.
v "In order to lock the tabbed plates 11 to the slotted mating slot 13 in one of the longitudinal columns 13a, as illustrated in FIG. 3. With the tabs 15 all thus inserted in that one longitudinal column of slots, a wire 16 is fitted through the apertures 17 formed in each of the inserted tabs 15, extending along the outer surface of the sheet 12. As can be seen most clearly in FIG. 2, the apertures 17 are positioned so that the innermost edge of the aperture 17 is flush with the outer surface of the sheet 12 when the tab 15 is fully inserted in its slot 13. Also, each of the apertures 17 is dimensioned so that its diameter is only slightly larger than the outside diameter of the wire 16. Consequently, when the wire 16 is fitted through the tabs 15, the adjacent peripheral portions of the plates 11 are held tightly against the inside surface of the sheet 12.
After the first wire 16 is in place, the sheet 12 is gradually rolled around the peripheries of the plates 11 with successive tabs 15 on the plates being fitted into successive longitudinal columns 13a of the slots 13 and locked thereto by means of additional wires 16. This operation is repeated until the sheet 12 has been rolled around the entire circumference of the plates 11, at which point the two non-parallel edges of the sheet 12 overlap each other to create a single column of slots meshing with the last set of tabs. Then when the last wire 16 is inserted through the last set of tabs 15, it presses the two overlapping edges of the sheet 12 tightly against the adjacent portions of the plates 11 so that the final horn shell is essentially continuous around its entire circumference, with the two overlapped edge portions being held tightly against one another (see FIG. 2).
It will be appreciated that this construction permits the use of metal of minimum thickness as required by the electrical and mechanical performance criteria for any given microwave horn. Both the horn shell 10 and the plates 11 can be made from metal that is less than 0.01 inch thick, typically 0.005 to 0.006 inch, which permits weight reductions on the order of 20 to l as compared with similar horns made by conventional techniques. Because of the reduction in the amount of metal in the horn, it is much lighter in weight than conventional horns, permitting considerable savings in mounting and support structures. Moreover, a corrugated horn constructed in accordance with this invention can be fabricated in a fraction of the time required tofabricate comparable horns by conventional fabrieating techniques. Using this construction, it becomes feasible to manufacture relatively long horns with a reasonable'weight; this is an important advantage because long horns are often desirable for reducing phase error.
To facilitate the locking of the sheet 12 to'the multiple plates 11 during the assembling operation, the slotted sheet 12 is preferably made of a resilient material. Then as the sheet is rolled around the'peripheries of the plates 11,.the resilience of the sheet 12 biases it outwardly against the previously inserted wires 6 so as to increase the frictional forces between the sheet 12, the wires 16 and the tabs 15. These frictional forces tend to hold all the assembled elements tightlyin place so that early portions of the assembly do not come apart during later stages of the assembling operation.
If desired, additional tabsmay be formed on the ends 'of the horn shell lll'for joining this horn section to adjacent horn se ctions, s'o that a horn of any desired length can be made by simply interconnecting the desired number of sections. Thus, in the illustrative embodi- United States Patent [191 McBride, Jr. et al.
[ METHOD OF MAKING LEVEL SENSOR  Inventors: Lyle E. McBride, Jr., Norton;
William W. Bowman, North Easton, both of Mass; Hans A. Stoeckler, Woonsocket, R.I.; Harold A. Hanson, Pawtucket, R.l.; Joseph J. Gibola, Cumberland, R1.
 Assignee: Texas Instruments Incorporated,
 Filed: Aug. 21, 1974  Appl. No.: 499,364
Related US. Application Data  Division of Ser. No. 426,872, Dec. 20, 1973.
 US. Cl. 29/612  Int. Cl H0lc 7/04  Field of Search 29/610, 612, 613, 614;
338/22, 25, 28, 229; 340/244 R; 73/362 AR  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,422,925 6/1947 Rady et al 338/28 X 2,611,007 9/1952 Cade et al 338/229 X Oct. 28, 1975 2,753,714 7/1956 Perkins et al. 338/229 X 2,933,708 4/1960 Elliot et a1. 338/28 3,375,774 4/1968 Fujimura et al.... 338/22 R X 3,832,668 8/1974 Herman 29/612 X [5 7] ABSTRACT A method of assembling a level sensor is disclosed which incorporates the steps of soldering a first wire lead to one side of a PTC sensor pill, soldering an isolating wafer to the other side of the pill .while sandwiching a second lead therebetween, placing insulating covers onto the leads, inserting an insulating sleeve within a bulbous metal can which is open at one end, and placing a solder form within the can. The pillwafer assembly is bonded to the can by applying heat to the solder form after which a cover member is secured to the open end of the can hermetically sealing 1t.
7 Claims; 5 Drawing Figures