Published online by Cambridge University Press: 21 May 2018
The contribution of this paper is to propose a novel rat-race hybrid coupler of arbitrary coupling coefficient. Traditionally, the rat-race hybrid couplers are built by various loop-alike transmission-lines of multiple quarter-wavelength, and in this paper, we approach the coupler design by using a circular substrate integrated waveguide (SIW) cavity (SIWC). The employed SIWC supports two mutually orthogonal degenerate modes, and cavity field is formed by the two modes in an arbitrary weighting ratio which defines the proposed rat-race coupler's coupling coefficient. The cavity is excited by a microstrip combined coupling slot with the microstrip along a specifically chosen direction. The energy of each degenerate mode can be solely extracted by an associated subminiature version A (SMA) whose position is carefully determined. The isolation between the coupling slots is assured by their perpendicular layout, and the isolation between the SMA probes is obtained by the orthogonality of the two degenerate modes. Experiments are conducted on the 3- and 10-dB coupling coefficient samples to verify this novel rat-race coupler design. The measurements agree well with the simulations, and circuit's good performance is observed in terms of coupling precision, isolations, and small phase imbalances.