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GaN transistors roll from TriQuint Semiconductor

Posted: 20 Jun 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:gallium nitride? GaN power transistors? communications?

TriQuint Semiconductor has released the first of its gallium nitride (GaN) power transistors for a wide range of high frequency applications including mobile base station, defense and space communications systems. TriQuint also announced opening the industry's first GaN foundry service for customers with circuit designs intended for production starts in September.

Latest offering
GaN represents the newest generation of amplifier technology with greater power density than other processes. It offers power savings and smaller device form factors for space-conscious design applications and helps improve electricity consumption, size and weight problems for communications applications. The benefits lead to better performance and lower overall system costs for the customer, and can shrink carbon footprints for network system operators focused on reducing global warming.

TriQuint's first high frequency GaN device family has been introduced at the IEEE IMS MTT-S Microwave Symposium. The discrete die-level devices boast up to 2.5x the power density of high voltage gallium arsenide devices. The GaN devices operate up to 18GHz, have 55 percent power added efficiency, and can produce up to 90W of output power.

GaN power technology has garnered significant defense and commercial interest because of its ability to operate with substantially greater power density (more wattage per mm?) and efficiency compared to other commonly used solid-state amplifier technologies. These factors enable the development of more efficient, smaller amplifiers capable of operating at higher system voltages, which lower overall system current demand and reduce the cost of power conversion.

"TriQuint's work on the DARPA contract for high power, high frequency amplifiers has progressed well. The products we are announcing today represent our first commercial release and we're excited about the opportunities this presents for customers," said Gailon Brehm, director of TriQuint defense product marketing. "GaN is one of several high power processes we offer customers, and its unique advantagesgreater power density, high efficiency and rugged dependability, will appeal to designers working with high frequency, high power applications."

In March, TriQuint announced what it claims as the largest GaN epitaxial wafer order of IQE Plc. The order, with deliveries scheduled throughout 2008, will support ongoing development efforts and the rollout of new commercial and defense products by TriQuint.

GaN foundry service
TriQuint has also announced that it is opening GaN foundry services in September. Brehm said that TriQuint's GaN Foundry services will initially target power amplifier applications through the Ku frequency band.

"Now that we've released the first member of our GaN discrete amplifier family for defense, commercial and space applications, we're welcoming foundry customers who have their own circuit designs ready for September starts," Brehm added. "We want to meet with customers, identify their needs and develop a successful implementation production schedule."

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