Microwave Journal

TriQuint’s RF Vision Simplifies Next-generation Global Network Connectivity

June 4, 2007

TriQuint Semiconductor, a manufacturer of RF products, released its Network Business Unit’s global vision for simplifying connectivity in consumer voice, data, music and video for fixed and mobile environments. New TriQuint products supporting the company’s vision will premier at the 2007 IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium (IMS) in Honolulu, HI.

TriQuint will simplify next-generation RF designs through products created with unique gallium arsenide (GaAs), surface and bulk acoustic wave (SAW/BAW) technologies used to integrate multiple functions into smaller, more efficient modules. These products in turn can simplify the manufacturing process for device and equipment makers. Additionally, TriQuint is packaging more of its extensive catalog of gallium arsenide die-level MMICs, to give manufacturers industry-leading surface mount amplifiers and switches. In the past TriQuint’s collection of die-level products were accessible mainly to manufacturers equipped to handle non-packaged components. More packaged products will give existing and new customers greater access to a broader selection of manufacturing options, and enable them to enter new markets. TriQuint is also simplifying the sales channels and tools used to access company products.

“Our customers want integrated devices for size and cost-constrained applications, more packaged product options, especially for higher frequency applications, and a simpler way to get those products. Our vision is about anticipating these needs and helping them increase productivity. Our customers are developing next-generation products that will enable connectivity convergence, which is about ‘networking’ in the human sense; it’s the ability to work wherever a person is, staying in touch with family, playing games, sharing pictures, having access to ‘data’ such as digital music, movies, TV or spreadsheets, and web surfing. People want access when and where they choose, without service quality issues, hence the need for fixed and mobile wireless high speed connectivity and the products that enable it. And they want it simple. Equipment makers have the same expectation,” said Brian Balut, TriQuint Networks vice president.

Integration is a key aspect of TriQuint’s vision, Balut explained. TriQuint is leveraging its recognized expertise in GaAs and SAW technology to create highly-integrated products that handle RF power, switching or filtering functions more efficiently while occupying less space on a PC board. Smaller, more efficient modules are more cost effective and can speed the manufacturing process, thereby reducing time to market. For example: TriQuint’s unique commercial GaAs E/D PHEMT process, the first of its kind, enables multi-band, die level integration of amplifiers, switches, filters and low-noise amplifiers to support Wireless LAN a, b, g, and n standards. This critical ability benefits new multiple-input, multiple-output (MIMO) designs at the heart of efforts to shrink network and CPE wideband wireless connections.

“For the consumer, MIMO will mean smaller devices that will be easier to configure and use in the community, workplace or home,” Balut explained. “But there’s another bonus: MIMO will also bring ‘diversity’, which in this context means ‘cleaner’ signals. This can virtually eliminate dropped calls, digital fade or data interruption that can now occur when downloading or uploading music, video or other data. TriQuint technology is enabling these next-generation wireless products while helping reduce the size of the RF component through our highly integrated modules.”

TriQuint is also enabling next-generation communications designs by packaging devices that were once only available as die-level MMIC (monolithic microwave integrated circuit) products. By packaging these high frequency parts TriQuint gives manufacturers access to a broader selection of the company’s vast die-level product collection. The ability to choose packaged devices promotes more creative ways to solve manufacturing challenges and can reduce costs or shorten time-to-market roll-outs.

“One consumer product market where we have already seen what the packaging revolution can do is in two-way satellite ground terminals used for providing high-speed Internet connections. For example, TriQuint has reduced the die surface area for the transmit power amplifier by more than 60% while continuing to improve performance. Products that were once difficult to package or required multiple die in a single package to achieve performance goals are now offered in a selection of packages, making for easier, less-specialized manufacturing. Die shrink has led to cost reductions; TriQuint pioneered in this area,” said Balut.

As the third component to its ‘Simplifying Connectivity’ vision, TriQuint is improving worldwide product access to enable greater productivity for RF engineers across the globe. In its first step, TriQuint announced in early May that it is simplifying its European coverage model by restructuring the distribution and sales channel. This will give engineers convenient, local access to RF professionals who will augment the TriQuint sales team as well as provide service from a world class logistics system to enhance delivery.

Another aspect of TriQuint’s vision of simplified connectivity comes in the form of its first Product Selection Guide to be released June 5th. The guide puts virtually all the company’s large portfolio of amplifier, filter and switch products into one easy-to-use volume, thus streamlining product access while leaving open the option of custom solutions for unique needs. The guide will enable designers and purchasing agents to more easily browse nearly the entire RF product line-up through the printed volume or on the web. By making RF engineers more aware of leading RF products, by providing them with a local interface and by easing the purchase process for timely samples and production volumes, TriQuint is helping simplify connectivity challenges.

TriQuint will release a number of new products at this year’s MTT-S IMS exhibition in support of its vision including new RF front-end devices for WiMAX radio links as well as packaged HFET (heterostructure field-effect transistor) products for base station and point-to-point radio connections. These products will be joined by new packaged amplifiers for satellite ground terminals along with newly packaged Multi-Function Circuit (MFC) devices for next-generation point-to-point radios.

“TriQuint’s Networks and Broadband vision is market focused. Highly-integrated module products and discrete parts will simplify Network solutions. Similar to the Handset market, TriQuint’s Network vision simplifies the design, manufacturing and purchasing processes. These same trends are being realized in our military product lines where more defense contractors than ever are expressing preferences for high-performing integrated and packaged devices. “TriQuint’s vision is to use our technology portfolio to build integrated RF front-end solutions for all fixed and mobile applications. We’re packaging more devices than ever and we’re making our products more readily available.

Collectively, this simplifies the design and manufacturing process for connectivity convergence,” said Balut. See TriQuint in action along with new highly efficient, cost-effective products at the IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium (IMS) and Exhibition in Honolulu, HI, June 5th-7th.