Broadband GaN LNA MMIC development with the micro/nano process development by kink-effect in S22 consideration
Broadband low noise ampliﬁers (LNA) are one of the key components of the nu-merous applications such as communication, electronic warfare, and radar. The requirements for higher bandwidth, higher speed, higher survivability, higher re-liability, etc. pushes the technological boundaries. The demand for high per-formance circuit components without a compromise stimulates the utilization of the high-end gallium nitride (GaN) technology to develop better monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMIC) in a smaller footprint. To support the progress, the development of a proper GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) technology and proper circuit models have become critical. To support the eﬀorts and contribute to the progress, a 0.25 µm microstrip (MS) GaN HEMT technology is developed in Bilkent University Nanotechnology Research Center (NANOTAM). The technology development yields that the MS GaN HEMT tech-nology is capable of supporting ≥4.4 W/mm output power (POUT ), ≥50% power added eﬃciency (PAE), ≥15 dB gain, and ∼1 dB noise ﬁgure (NF ) at 10 GHz. Moreover, the gate structure of the technology is studied by evaluating the kink-eﬀect (KE) in the output reﬂection coeﬃcient (S22) of a HEMT to support the broadband operation. Besides the technology development, the small-signal (SS) and noise equivalent circuit models are studied, and the developed models present high convergence with the measurements. The accuracy of the models contributes to development of the cascode HEMT based LNAs even without fabricating the cascode HEMT. Furthermore, the developed models and the proper gate struc-ture are used to develop the broadband quad-ﬂat no-leads (QFN) packaged GaN LNA MMIC for the mobile radio communications, the military radar, and the commercial radar applications. The results of the circuit models and the GaN LNA MMIC also yield that the developed MS GaN HEMT technology is capable for developing diﬀerent solutions up to 18 GHz.