This 3-stage PA operates from 24 to 28GHz, so covering the full 26GHz 5G Pioneer Band (24.25 to 27.5GHz) with useful guard band. This frequency range encompasses the 24GHz band proposed for auction by the FCC (24.25–24.45 and 24.75–25.25 GHz). It was realised on a commercially available 0.15µm GaAs PHEMT process and includes an on-chip RF power detector for monitoring the transmitted RF power. Plots of the measured s-parameters of 5 samples compared to the simulated are shown below demonstrating excellent agreement between measured and modelled performance.

Also plotted below are the measured power transfer characteristics at 26GHz. RF output power at 1dB gain compression (P-1dB) is 26.5dBm with an associated Power Added Efficiency (PAE) of just over 30%.




A custom laminate SMT package was designed to house two PA MMICs in order to produce a dual-channel component with two RF inputs and two RF outputs. The package has a standard 32-pin QFN footprint with a solid copper base and a 7mm x 7mm body. It was developed in collaboration with Filtronic, who were responsible for package manufacture and assembly, with support from the UK’s Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult (CSA Catapult). The photograph shows a packaged dual channel PA assembled onto an evaluation PCB fabricated in Rogers RO4003. The PCB was assembled onto an aluminium carrier for rigidity and improved thermal performance.

A TRL calibration tile was also manufactured to allow calibration of the measured performance on the evaluation PCB to the package ports. The plot below shows the measured output IP3 of the packaged part over temperature.

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