I am new to amateur radio and am having trouble getting my head around antenna theory. Can anyone suggest a good 'introduction to antennas' that doesn't get too technical? Thanks.
Three books come to my mind:
- the evergreen Karl Rothammel: Antenna Book,
- Joseph J. Carr: Practical Antenna Handbook, which is technical, but it starts from the very beginning, and an exciting reading as well,
- and the (latest edition of the) ARRL Antenna Book that I didn't read myself, but it says it's a reference book of (HAM) antennas, it may help, too.
Why Antennas Radiate clearly describes how antennas produce the electromagnetic fields we use for radio communication. Replacing complex mathematics with an intuitive, visual presentation, author Ken MacLeish, W7TX, describes the electric fields produced by static charges, the magnetic fields produced by moving charges (i.e., current) and the electromagnetic fields produced by accelerating charges.
Having these fundamental concepts under one's belt is essential to understanding the differences between simple antennas and the operation of complex designs.