Performance and applications of Gallium-Nitride Monolithic Microwave Integrated Circuits (GaN MMICs)

Jonathan B. Scott, Anthony E. Parker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The evolution of wide-bandgap semiconductor transistor technology is placed in historical context with other active device technologies. The relative rapidity of GaN transistor development is noted and is attributed to the great parallel activity in the lighting sector and the historical experience and business model from the III-V compound semiconductor sector. The physical performance expectations for wide-bandgap technologies such as Gallium-Nitride Field-Effect Transistors (GaN FETs) are reviewed. We present some device characteristics. Challenges met in characterising, and prospects for modeling GaN FETs are described. Reliability is identified as the final remaining hurdle facing would-be foundries. Evolutionary and unsurprising applications as well as novel and revolutionary applications are suggested. Novel applications include wholly monolithic switchmode power supplies, simplified tools for ablation and diathermy in tissue, and very wide dynamic range circuits for audio or low phase noise signal generation. We conclude that now is the time to embark on circuit design of MMICs in wide-bandgap technology. The potential for fabless design groups to capitalise upon design IP without strong geopraphic advantage is noted.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMicroelectronics: Design, Technology, and Packaging III
EditorsAlex J. Hariz, Vijay K. Varadan
Place of PublicationBellingham, WA
PublisherSPIE
Pages1-12
Number of pages12
Volume6798
ISBN (Print)9780819469694
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008
EventMicroelectronics: Design, Technology, and Packaging III - Canberra, ACT, Australia
Duration: 5 Dec 20077 Dec 2007

Other

OtherMicroelectronics: Design, Technology, and Packaging III
CountryAustralia
CityCanberra, ACT
Period5/12/077/12/07

Keywords

  • Circuit design
  • Compound semiconductor
  • Gallium nitride
  • MMIC
  • Wide-bandgap

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