The Pros and Cons of Log Periodic Antennas

Updated on July 2, 2020
tamarawilhite profile image

Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, industrial engineer, mother of two, and published sci-fi and horror author.

What Are Log Periodic Antennas?

There are several different types of log periodic antennas, such as the planar log periodic, zig-zag periodic, slot periodic antenna, V LP antenna, trapezoidal and dipole LP antenna. The log periodic dipole array antenna is abbreviated to LPDA for short; this is the most common type of log periodic antenna.

In all cases, the longest element of the log periodic antenna is at the rear of the array. All log periodic antennas feed from the front or narrow end.

The log periodic antenna is similar to a yagi antenna but not exactly the same. For the log periodic antenna, the driven elements decrease in size where none are the same length. For a yagi antenna, most of the elements are of the same length. The highest frequency the antenna can receive is a function of the shortest element at the front. The element at the back is half a wavelength of the lowest frequency in operation.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of log periodic antennas?

A printed circuit board log periodic antenna
A printed circuit board log periodic antenna | Source

The Advantages of Log Periodic Antennas

They have very wide bandwidths. Log periodic antennas have much broader frequency bandwidths than Yagi antennas. One log periodic antenna may work for both HF and UHF frequencies. A log periodic antenna can be used for EMC measurements, when it is necessary to scan a wide band of frequencies.

Log periodic antennas have the same radiation resistance over their frequency range. This gives it the same SWR whether at the low point of its frequency range or the high end.

LP antennas also have the same gain and back to front ratio, and they have high forward gain. In contrast, a yagi antenna would experience degradation of its gain factor or front to back ratio as the frequency shifted from the one the antenna was optimized for. Three to six dB gain over a 2:1 bandwidth is reasonable with a log periodic antenna.

Their feed point impedance is mostly constant.

Because log periodic antennas have elements of different lengths as part of their design, it is easy to make changes in its frequency with relatively little impact on its electrical characteristics. Adding elements to a log periodic dipole antenna increases its bandwidth.

Log periodic antennas typically have low SWR, rarely greater than 2:1. You may be able to achieve an SWR level better than 1.3:1.

Since a log periodic antenna electrically acts like an array of yagi antennas, using a single log periodic antenna can replace multiple yagis.

Disadvantages of Log Periodic Antennas

They have very low gain. They have less gain than a yagi antenna of the same size. And they have low gain per unit of weight or wind load.

In order for a log periodic antenna to have very good VSWR performance, it needs to be very large. For smaller log periodic antennas, the VSWR performance is not very good. This can be offset by adding a yagi antenna to the receiving array.

A Herringbone type log periodic antenna
A Herringbone type log periodic antenna | Source

Observations about Log Periodic Antennas

Log periodic antennas are beam antennas, not omni-directional. And they have a low polarization ratio as a result.

Elements in a log periodic antenna may be sloped forward or simply sit perpendicular to the main feed. Herringbone Log Periodics, log periodic antennas with swept forward elements, work well on their 3rd harmonics. Since TV channels 7 through 13 are the 3rd harmonic of TV Channels 2 through 6, making herringbone log periodic antennas popular as TV antennas.

Parasitic elements are sometimes used to enhance the gain or front to back ratio of a log periodic antenna.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

  • I am planning to build an antenna to boost signals for my 4G dongle. I am looking for to build an antenna for 2300Mz to 2400Mz. Which antenna is best for this purpose Yagi or Log Periodic Antenna?

    The best small antenna for this application is a 2-11 GHz log periodic by Kent Electronics. It would have 6 dBi gain. Their larger 850-6500 MHz log periodic antenna would work,having 6 dBi gain. A yagi antenna built specifically for that frequency range would have about 10 dBi gain.

  • If I was to build a 400 MHz -1000mhz and cover it to protect it from the elements, can I use it as the centre of my parabolic antenna?

    Yes, Log Periodics have been used a dish feeds for over 50 years.

    Physics says a parabolic needs to be 10 wavelengths across to bring the waves to a proper focus. You can get a parabolic 5 wavelengths across to work reasonably well.

    At 400 MHz, the waves are 70 cm long, so you need a 3.5 Meter dish.

    At 1000 MHz the waves are 30 cm long, so you need at least a 1.5 Meter dish.


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)