Cree Inc. (Booth 1925) will demonstrate the industry's first GaN HEMT MMIC high power amplifier (HPA) for satellite communication applications at IMS 2011 in Baltimore. The demonstration product offers dramatic performance improvements over existing commercially-available GaAs MESFET transistors or Traveling Wave Tube-based amplifiers.

"This is the first GaN MMIC to be demonstrated that offers game-changing performance for satellite communication applications due to the outstanding linear efficiency and power gains provided by our GaN HEMT technology. We anticipate our GaN products will have a large impact on how thermal management is approached and will enable reductions in both size and weight for commercial and military satellite communication systems," said Jim Milligan, Cree, Director of RF.

The CMPA5585025F MMIC is a 50 ohm, 25 W peak power two-stage GaN HEMT HPA in a multi-pin ceramic/metal package (1" x 0.38"). The instantaneous bandwidth of operation of the MMIC is 5.8 GHz to 8.4 GHz. It provides 15 W of linear power (<-30 dBc adjacent channel power) with 20 dB power gain. Power added efficiency is 25 percent at this linear operating power.

The device offers superior linear efficiency (up to 60 percent higher than conventional solutions) in a small footprint package facilitating reductions in transmitter size and weight with lower cost thermal management. In addition, because this device operates at higher voltages than GaAs MESFETs (e.g., 28 V versus 12 V), the transistors draw less current, resulting in lower power distribution losses and higher overall system efficiencies.

Samples of the CMPA5585025F are available now, and production release is targeted for the summer of 2011.