Subtitle: Why Hams should stick to wire dipoles and verticals, and leave the advanced tech to the Physicists and Scientists
Once upon a time in a land far, far away I had the mistaken idea that an efficient antenna *had* to be at least 1/4 wave tall. How wrong I was. This kind of thinking, though, still pervades industry and Ham-dom. What changed my mind was the Kinstar antenna , an antenna which is approximately one-third the height of the standard quarter-wave antenna used by many AM stations that still delivers a field strength which is 98% that of a monopole vertical .
Since having it demonstrated, revealed, as it were, that a physically shorter antenna can yield near 1/4 wave tall performance, it was time to revise my thinking on this subject. I now realize that the mechanism that yield efficient antenna radiation is a little more complicated than than just having a 1/4 wave vertical element, but, I had to discover this on my own, because,you see, practically no one seems to understand how antennas really work. Oh sure, some will wave their hands and point you to Maxwell’s Equations, but, that is not sufficient to the average human being.