MACOM launches new GaN power transistors

MACOM Technology Solutions reported the newest entries in its MAGb series of GaN on Silicon power transistors for use in macro wireless basestations.

According to a media release, based on MACOM’s Gen4 GaN technology, the new MAGb-101822-240B0P and MAGb-101822-120B0P power transistors harness the clear performance benefits of GaN in rugged, low-cost plastic packaging, enabling improved cost efficiencies that further distinguish MACOM’s GaN power transistors as the natural successors to legacy LDMOS offerings for basestation applications.

The Company noted that the new plastic TO-272-packaged MAGb-101822-240B0P and MAGb-101822-120B0P power transistors provide 320 W and 160 W output peak power, respectively, in the load-pull system with fundamental tuning only, and cover all cellular bands and power levels within the 1.8 – 2.2 GHz frequency range. These transistors’ ability to operate over 400 MHz of bandwidth precludes the need to use multiple LDMOS-based products, further optimizing cost and design efficiencies.

MACOM said that plastic-packaged MAGb power transistors deliver power efficiency up to 79 percent – an improvement of up to 10 percent compared to LDMOS offerings – with only fundamental tuning across the 400 MHz RF bandwidth, and with linear gain of up to 20 dB. These transistors provide an alternative to ceramic-packaged devices without compromising RF performance or reliability – thermal behavior is improved by 10 percent compared to ceramic-packaged MAGb offerings.

“DPD is critical to increase the efficiency of power amplifiers for 4G and 5G basestation applications and has a significant impact on network operators’ operating expenses and capital expenditures,” said Dr. Chris Dick, Chief DSP Architect at Xilinx. “Our joint demonstration with MACOM at IMS 2016 will showcase the combined DPD capabilities of MACOM’s Gen4 GaN-based MAGb power transistors and Xilinx’s complementary DPD technologies on our 28 nm Zynq SoC and 16 nm UltraScale+ MPSoCs. This joint solution highlights the time-to-market advantages that can be achieved with a proven, interoperable DPD solution.”

“Our collaboration with Xilinx demonstrates the linearity and ease of correction of our MAGb, especially with signals that are known to be challenging to correct using GaN-based solutions like multi-carrier GSM and TDD-LTE signals,” said Preet Virk, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Carrier Networks, at MACOM. “We believe that with the introduction of our new plastic-packaged MAGb power transistors, we’re further extending this price/performance advantage over competiting LDMOS and other GaN technologies, and accelerating the evolution to GaN-based PAs for wireless basestations.”

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