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PA modules include all RF matching, bypassing circuitry

Posted: 22 Feb 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:rf micro devices? rfmd? powerstar? power amplifier module? pa module?

RF Micro Devices Inc. (RFMD) introduced the next generation of its PowerStar power amplifier (PA) module portfolio. Measuring 6-by-6-by-1.4mm, the quad-band rf3158 (GSM/GPRS/EDGE) and quad-band RF3166 (GSM/GPRS) represent greater than 30 percent reduction in size versus the previous generation of PowerStar PA modules.

"Our designers have included all the necessary matching components into the modules, so layout and assembly requirements are simplified to input and output traces only," said Konrad Alvarino, GM of power amplifier products at RFMD. "With their reduced footprint, the highly integrated RF3158 and RF3166 also provide enhanced performance and ease of implementation, thereby enabling our customers to introduce high-quality, feature-rich next-generation handsets more quickly and cost-effectively."

The high-power, high-efficiency RF3158 and RF3166 are self-contained PA modules with 50? input and over 50dB of control range. The RF3158 is designed for use as the final RF amplifier in GSM/EDGE, GSM850, DCS and PCS handheld digital cellular equipment and other applications operating in the 824MHz to 915MHz and 1,710MHz to 1,910MHz bands. Meanwhile, the RF3166 is designed for use as the final RF amplifier in GSM850, EGSM900, DCS and PCS handheld digital cellular equipment and other applications operating in the 824MHz to 849MHz, 880MHz to 915MHz, 1,710MHz to 1,785MHz, and 1,850MHz to 1,910MHz bands.

The two PowerStar PA modules feature integrated battery voltage (VBATT) tracking circuitry, which is an industry first for standard PA module products, said the press release. Battery voltage monitoring circuitry automatically measures battery voltage and adjusts ramp voltage, thereby preventing the power control loop from reaching saturation during low voltage battery conditions. VBATT tracking circuitry also reduces transients, which occur at low battery voltage conditions and can reduce efficiency.

Using RFMD's low-cost laminate module substrate technology, the two devices are one of the industry's first true quad-band 6-by-6-by-1.4mm GSM/GPRS/EDGE PA modules that incorporate all RF matching and bypassing circuitry, eliminating the need for external bypass components and critical routing. Additionally, the RF3158 and RF3166 feature power and current flatness over all four bands for easy optimization and tuning. These PA modules also enable handset designers to quickly implement robust transmit solutions and take advantage of superior efficiency, said RFMD.

The RF3166 is already in mass production and is priced at $1.95 in quantities of 10,000 units. The RF3158 is currently being sampled to customers and will ramp into mass production in the second quarter of calendar year 2005.

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