AURA - Antenna for Underwater Radio Communications

Posted by Daniel from INESC TECResponsive · Patents for licensing · Portugal

Summary of the technology

Automatic RF frequency-tuneable technology to adjust antenna directional radiation pattern to optimize radio signal coupling with other devices such as autonomous vehicles (AUVs) or underwater sensors.


Description of the technology

Challenge / Opportunity

Underwater wireless communications are currently based in acoustic, optical or radio frequency (RF) technologies. While acoustic systems have poor performance in shallow water, optical systems are very susceptible to turbidity and fouling particles, and they require line-of-sight and thus precise alignment.

RF systems have several advantages over acoustic and optical systems such as turbidity and acoustic noise immunity, non-line-of-sight operations, and high bandwidths (up to 100 Mbit/s) at very close range. However, the radiation pattern of RF systems may be highly affected by environmental conditions, namely salinity, jeopardizing communications range and data rate.

Developed at INESC TEC, AURA tackles this limitation of RF systems by automatically adjusting the resonant frequency of the antenna considering surrounding salinity and the position of the receiver device.


Main advantages

  • Higher underwater data rate
  • Improved operational flexibility in both fresh and seawater


Current development status

Laboratory prototypes

Intellectual property status

Patent already applied for

Patent already applied for

Patent already applied for

Technology Owner


Technology Transfer Office

Related keywords

  • Electronics, IT and Telecomms
  • Internet Technologies/Communication (Wireless, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth)
  • Internet of Things
  • Telecommunications, Networking
  • Mobile Communications
  • Marine Environment
  • Data Communications
  • Microwave and satellite components (including antennae and amplifiers)
  • Communications/networking
  • antenna
  • subsea
  • radio frequency


Technology Transfer Office from Portugal

INESC TEC is a systems and computer engineering R&D institute with 900+ researchers producing Scientific Research and Technological Development, offering advanced training, specialised consulting and promoting the transfer of its technologies to the market. INESC TEC’s research covers several areas of knowledge: telecommunications, power systems, information and computer graphics, applied photonics, robotics, artificial intelligence, advanced computing, high-assurance software and biomedical engineering.
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