# What is the maximum and minimum of antenna gap of dipole antenna?

Consider the picture below is design of half wave length dipole antenna. I read some explanation that it is the best design to get the optimum transmit power. Or it is cut to 0.47Lamda to 0.48Lamda to get the optimum impedance (CMIIW).

But my concern here is, what is the minimum or maximum distance of the gap as in the picture? Gap between the two elements which the feeder line is connected?

• What frequency?
– Chu
Aug 2, 2019 at 14:37
• If possible, just put it in lamda as it is commonly used. But if you think you really need, just use 2,100MHz. Aug 2, 2019 at 14:41
• from ARRL manuals I distantly read years ago, you may need a balun at that point. Aug 2, 2019 at 15:02
• What is the relation between balun and that gap? I am asking what is the allowed maximum and/or minimum gap of the two elements, not asking how to balance. Aug 2, 2019 at 15:15
• Ideal gap is zero. But small is fine. I don't think there's any reason to make it large. All measurements relative to lambda of course. Aug 2, 2019 at 15:27

The gap is just small as possible. As you say that you will be using RG8, then the gap should be not more than the thickness of the insulator between the core and the outer. Say the insulator thickness is 1mm, then you should set the gap space 1mm. But make sure there is not spark created between the two pieces of the antenna (you may search Heinrich Hertz's device when he successfully demonstrated the Maxwell hypothesis). If the power is too big, then maybe there will be spark there, which the current will not be delivered to the tips of the antenna or to the demodulator in the case of receiving antenna. But if it is in receiving side, will be no problem as the power is very low.

Why?

The reason is, to avoid electric and magnetic field (electromagnetic/EM field) generated by the cable conducting current, both by the inner and the outer. If possible, each cable (the inner and the outer) should be shielded with aluminium foil so no EM generated at all. EM should be generated in the antenna side, not in the cable line. To understand this, you must understand the Lenz low, right hand rule.

Why can not as be far?

As I explained above, to avoid each cable creates EM field in the cable before they reach the antenna.

An old ARRL VHF Manual shows dipole diagrams like this:

As in your diagram, both antenna and feedline are balanced. Feeding with coax transmission line may require a balun near the antenna feed point.
The top diagram shows two half-waves end-driven by a balanced feed line. However, a half-wave dipole, unfed is also shown, suggesting that the entire length should be a half-wavelength. An insulating dielectric material at the "low Z" point should affect antenna impedance the least, as compared to any other point along its length.

The ARRL Antenna Book shows this half-wave dipole diagram (below), where no distinction is made concerning antenna lengths when considering the short distance between one balanced feedline wire and the other:

However, the text regarding this diagram suggests that the defining point is that the open ends of the dipole set the highest impedance point, being at a voltage node:

Starting from the end of the antenna, the current must be flowing in one direction throughout the first half-wavelength section, whether this section is entirely antenna or partly antenna and partly one wire of the transmission line. Thus […] the current flows in the same direction from P to Q, since this is all the same conductor

It would appear that this form of feedline is using a quarter wavelength of transmission line in an attempt to make the feed balanced. My assumption would be that the balanced feedline would continue all the way to the signal source/load.
From this text, I would suggest that any wire length between the "antenna element" and the feedline be counted as part of antenna.

Be aware that the wire diameter-to-length ratio affects the electrical lengths (in terms of wavelength).

• As my question, what is the minimum or maximum distance of the gap as in the picture? Do we need to care about it? What if I give it 0.25 lamda while length from tip to tip of the two element is still remain 0.5 lamda? And what if I just put insulator so the gap will be as small as possible? That actually my concern. Aug 2, 2019 at 16:05
• Have made a major edit: would seem to me that tip-to-tip should be half wavelength, shortened somewhat by the element's length-to-diameter factor. Aug 2, 2019 at 18:00
• Thank you for your explanation. Hard for me to understand this phrase "An insulating dielectric material at the "low Z" point should affect antenna impedance the least, as compared to any other point along its length." Will you please elaborate this? Are you saying that the best design is to put the gap as small as possible? Aug 3, 2019 at 2:37
• You had mentioned put insulator so the gap will be as small as possible. Have only seen the feed-point region discussed where a metal support (boom) is adjacent or where antenna elements are mounted through or attached to a metal boom. Aug 3, 2019 at 12:44
• In my understanding, for Yagi antenna, the elements (the driven, the reflector, and the director) are not contacted to the supporting boom. They are isolated from one to another. There will be insulator (mostly plastic) between the boom and the elements. And should be like that, right? Aug 3, 2019 at 13:39