What is the difference between cross-polarized yagi antennas and circularly polarized antennas?

  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to ham.stackexchange.com! Please consider taking the tour to get the most from the site. $\endgroup$ – rclocher3 Feb 24 '17 at 20:55

Cross polarization usually refers to the opposite polarization. For example vertical and horizontal are opposites, as are right-hand and left-hand circular. Theoretically, a pair of cross-polarized antennas will have zero coupling, but in practice an extra 20 to 30dB of path loss is typical.

Usually this is an undesirable thing, but it can be exploited for diversity or multiplexing.

That said, I wouldn't be surprised to find lay usages of "cross polarization" meaning circular polarization. Many circular polarized antennas have elements arranged in a cross.

  • $\begingroup$ Great, thanks. A manual for an antenna actually refers to an antenna meant for satellite communication (140MHz) as "cross-polarized" and it got me confused, considering most satellites use circular polarization. In particular it was the 2MCP22 from M2 antenna $\endgroup$ – metropolis Feb 22 '17 at 15:46
  • $\begingroup$ Just as a follow up: is it correct to say that the 2MCP22 is a circularly polarized antenna? $\endgroup$ – metropolis Mar 22 '17 at 14:45
  • $\begingroup$ @user47136 It would seem that way. The marketing material even says it's their "finest circular polarized antenna". $\endgroup$ – Phil Frost - W8II Mar 22 '17 at 15:06

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