Wolfspeed Designs a Compact PA Solution Using Novel GaN Process and AWR Software
Wolfspeed, a Cree company, a provider of silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) power and RF solutions, is the leader in wide bandgap semiconductor technology, Wolfspeed partners with the world’s designers to build a new future of faster, smaller, lighter, and more powerful electronic systems.
Modern electronic warfare (EW) and battlefield awareness require reliable, high-output-power, high-efficiency, and large-bandwidth power amplifier (PA) solutions. Wolfspeed selected the 0.25 µm process for its benefits of 6 W/mm power density, >120 V breakdown, and 28 V operation that deliver the highest power gain possible from a single-stage RF device.
Design goals for the PA were to create a single-ended amplifier with the ability to deliver over 70 W (CW) from 0.5 – 3.0 GHz, while maintaining an efficiency high enough to operate at a case temperature of 65° C. Other critical parameters included gain flatness of +/- 1 dB for easy system integration and good input/output return losses.
The Wolfspeed design team chose the AWR Design Environment platform, specifically Microwave Office circuit design software, for the design of this device. The final product (CG2H30070) demonstrated 80 - 115 W of output power from 0.5 - 3.0 GHz with greater than 48 percent drain efficiency. For the full design, a high degree of correlation was achieved between the simulations and measured results. The predicted drain efficiency was typically within 2 percent of the measured data and the output power was within 0.5 dB across the frequency range.
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