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Mainstream GaN

With 30+ years of experience delivering RF power transistors, NXP is leading the industry in bringing GaN RF power devices into a secure and reliable mainstream supply chain for Base Station, Industrial Scientific & Medical and Aerospace & Defense applications.

NXP’s first generation GaN process technology features best in class linearity while at the same time allowing designers to maintain power, ruggedness and efficiency. This enables an uncompromised amplifier design that can reduce component count and reduce amplifier footprint. NXP’s leading back end assembly facility consistently leverages the high power density of GaN into smaller and more broadband circuitry.

Through a broad portfolio of high performance GaN and LDMOS products, only NXP offers you unbiased choices enabling optimized designs for your application.

Table 1. NXP Gen1 GaN Product Availability.

Type

Data sheet

Load-pull report

Test report

ADS model

AWR model

CLF1G0060(S)-10

now

now

now

now

now

CLF1G0060(S)-30

now

now

now

now

now

CLF1G0035(S)-50

now

now

now

now

now

CLF1G0035(S)-100

now

now

now

now

now

CLF1G0035(S)-100P

now

now

now

now

now

CLF1G0035(S)-200P

now

now

now

now

now

Figure 1. GaN Demo Portfolio



GaN Demo Portfolio

Key features and benefits

  • High frequencies, bandwidth up to 6 GHz
  • High efficiencies
  • High power density
  • High thermal conductivity
  • GaN can operate at high temperatures, without loss of reliability (250 °C compared to 225 °C for Si LDMOS)
  • Excellent ruggedness

Key applications

  • Commercial wireless infrastructure (base stations)
  • Radar systems
  • Broadband and narrow band general purpose amplifiers
  • Public mobile radios
  • Industrial Scientific Medical
  • Jammers
  • Test instrumentation
  • EMC testing

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Descriptive summary

GaN: a breakthrough technology

If independent market research claims come true GaN product sales will exceed 300 Musd in 2014. This can only happen if GaN is made available through mainstream semiconductor companies, of which NXP is the first. So, what is it about GaN and RF power applications? Simply put, GaN makes a step increase in efficiency and power density performance over Si LDMOS in most applications. This can be quantified in the Johnson’s Figure of Merit (FoM) – a combination of significant RF performance variables that has a baseline for Si at 1 and leads to a FoM for GaN of 324. To put this into some context, GaAs, another commonly used compound material in RF, has a FoM of 1.44. Suffice to say, GaN truly represents a breakthrough technology.

Biasing

GaN products are termed High-Electron Mobility Transistors (HEMT), a name that captures one of the intrinsic benefits of GaN: the high electron drift velocity. These transistors are depletion-mode devices, that is, devices that are normally on, without the need for applying a gate bias. A negative gate bias will be needed to switch the transistors off. This biasing is not straightforward but at NXP we offer solutions rather than just components so already have a tried and tested bias circuit available and provide continuous application support through the life of the product.

High temperatures

A further advantage of GaN is that it is a very hard structure capable to withstand very high temperatures. NXP’s GaN transistors will be specified to a maximum temperature of 250 °C, compared to 225 °C for Si LDMOS. With such high temperatures there is a greater need to have packages capable of exploiting this feature. For this customers benefit from NXP’s 30 year legacy in RF power products, we are the only GaN supplier with such an industrial base that brings customers excellence in product reliability, cost and a high degree of confidence in the supply chain. As we like to say, this takes GaN mainstream.

1st Generation NXP GaN products

The first generation NXP GaN products will be unmatched broadband amplifiers for use in applications requiring high RF performance across a wide range of frequencies up to 3.5 GHz. NXP’s 1st generation GaN process is designed for products operating from a 50V supply voltage, delivering best-in-class efficiency and linearity. The products will use industry standard package footprints enabling customers to adopt NXP’s products into existing designs without changing the mechanical design. Next generation GaN devices from NXP will be super-efficient enabling a breakthrough in performance for the largest RF power market segment: cellular base-stations. In turn this technology will enable a break from linear amplifier topologies with the onset of switched mode power amplifier (SMPA) concepts. NXP’s commitment to exploit the technology in a full portfolio of products will also lead to products for higher frequency applications up to 10 GHz.

Table 1. Selection Guide Gen1 GaN Products.

Type

fmin (MHz)

fmax (MHz)

Pout (W)

VDS (V)

ηD (%)

Gp (dB)

CLF1G0060(S)‑10

0

6000

10

50

33.2

17

CLF1G0060(S)‑30

0

6000

30

50

59

15.9

CLF1G0035(S)‑50

0

3500

50

50

49

13

CLF1G0035(S)‑100

0

3500

100

50

59.5

13.9

CLF1G0035(S)‑100P

0

3500

100

50

50.1

12.7

CLF1G0035(S)‑200P

0

3500

200

50

43.5

11.5

Products

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DIV Table experiment (Column Based)




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