Terahertz circuits

Motorola and Phiar Corporation are to work together to develop high-speed millimetre wave receive arrays for medical imaging, automotive radar and defence applications.

Whereas today’s mass market semiconductor technology enables devices to be manufactured that run in the Megahertz frequency range and are entering the low end Gigahertz frequency range of operation, Motorola and Phiar plan to demonstrate circuits that are capable of running in the hundreds of GHz and potentially into the THz range.

The joint development effort will utilize Phiar’s new Metal-Insulator technology and Motorola’s millimetre wave circuits and systems technology, modelling and simulation, device and circuit characterization and advanced prototyping capabilities.

Phiar’s 200GHz detector showing 20GHz, rectified signal current distribution.

This enabling Metal-Insulator technology can be broadly incorporated with circuits which use standard CMOS manufacturing as well as other semiconductor and printed circuit technologies.

Because the technology is compatible with multiple standards and substrates, it has the potential to greatly improve the speed and simplify interconnects, both lowering cost and improving performance.