An Ultralow-Loss and Lightweight Cellulose-Coated Silica Foam for Planar Fresnel Zone Plate Lens Applications in Future 6G Devices

Several passive components of fifth-generation (5G) and future sixth-generation (6G) telecommunication devices require substrate materials of very low dielectric permittivity and losses to avoid wave absorption reflection and interference. Apart from their dielectric properties these materials shall be also affordable and sufficiently robust to enable postprocessing and integration of functional electrical components. Herein we demonstrate a Fresnel zone plate lens for operation at 300 GHz whose structure is supported on substrate made of an ultraporous silica foam with a nanocellulose thin film coating. The effective dielectric permittivity and loss of the substrate ( ϵ r = 1.018 ± 0.003 and tan δ < 3 × 10 −4 at 300 GHz) is close to that of air. Experiments show that the fabricated Fresnel zone plate lens connected to a waveguide with total gain of 20 dB and angular beamwidth of 2.9° in good agreement with microwave simulations. The proposed lens structure has additional advantages such as small volume ultralight weight and simulations indicate 60 GHz bandwidth making it particularly appealing for radio front-ends of future 6G devices.