GaAs HBT for demanding phones

RF Micro Devices has announced the availability of its series of gallium arsenide heterojunction bipolar transistor driver power amplifiers for cellular base station infrastructure applications.

RF Micro Devices has announced the availability of its series of gallium arsenide heterojunction bipolar transistor (GaAs HBT) driver power amplifiers for cellular base station infrastructure applications.

Comprised of the RF3800, RF3802 and RF3805, this series of multi-band platform devices are said to feature higher breakdown voltage for superior output power, efficiency and linearity.

Jeff Shealy, vice president of the infrastructure product group at RF Micro Devices, said, “In response to significant customer interest, we are now sampling these best-in-class driver power amplifiers to leading infrastructure OEMs. These highly linear amplifiers enable infrastructure manufacturers to accommodate the demanding capacity requirements of next-generation, feature-rich cellular phones.

“By leveraging proprietary thermal enhancements to our proven GaAs HBT process and by using a low-cost, thermally enhanced aluminium nitride package, our driver PAs provide customers potential cost savings of greater than 30 percent, compared to currently available silicon LDMOS transistors assembled in costly ceramic metal-flange packages.”

The RF3800 series of driver amplifiers is said to provide up to +37 dBm of output power (P1dB), high power efficiency (greater than 35 percent at P1dB), high linearity (+50 dBm OIP3) and higher gain (14 to 20 dB) under linear class AB operation.

By utilising RFMD’s GaAs HBT process technology, the RF3800 series of GaAs HBT driver power amplifiers delivers a lower cost, multi-band platform for infrastructure applications, ranging from 450 MHz to 2200 MHz.

The driver power amplifiers are assembled in a thermally enhanced aluminium nitride (AlN) LCC-8 package, which provides a more robust option to lower power GaAs microwave monolithic integrated circuit (MMIC) plastic-packaged pre-driver amplifiers and is a cost-effective alternative to higher power flange-mount silicon LDMOS transistors.

The LCC-8 leadless package is reportedly ‘footprint compatible’ with the industry standard SOIC-8 and requires minimal PC board artwork. The AlN LCC-8 package is lead-free and eliminates the need for costly re-qualification efforts, which are necessary to conform to the European mandated “Restricted Use of Hazardous Substances” (RoHS) compliance.

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