NEC has developed a GaAs-based power amplifier that achieves what it believes is the world’s highest output power of 10 mW in the 150-GHz band. Built with mass-producible GaAs technology, the device targets mobile access and fronthaul/backhaul wireless equipment to enable high-speed, high-capacity communications for 5G Advanced and 6G networks.
The power amp design uses a commercially available 0.1-μm GaAs pseudomorphic high electron mobility transistor (pHEMT) process. Compared to CMOS and SiGe technologies used for the sub-terahertz band, GaAs pHEMTs offer high operation voltage and lower initial costs for mass production.
The power amplifier eliminates factors that degrade performance in the high-frequency band and employs an impedance matching network configuration suitable for high output power. According to NEC’s research, this results in excellent high-frequency characteristics between 110 GHz and 150 GHz, as well as the highest output power for a GaAs pHEMT amplifier.
NEC presented details about the amplifier technology at this month’s IEEE Topical Conference on RF/Microwave Power Amplifiers for Radio and Wireless Applications (PAWR2023).
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