With prizes worth $25,000 on offer, registration has opened for NXP Semiconductors’ first-ever High Performance RF Design Challenge, which invites RF engineers and students worldwide to submit creative application ideas for RF power devices. RF power transistors have traditionally been used in telecommunications, aerospace and broadcast infrastructure, as well as various industrial, scientific and medical applications.

As RF LDMOS technology has become more powerful, rugged and cost-effective, this has, in turn, enabled exciting new applications. The NXP HPRF Design Challenge will award prizes to design entries based on criteria including creativity, design efficiency, usefulness, originality and proof of concept. Prizes include an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2011 MTT-S International Microwave Symposium in Baltimore, MD.

The Challenge will comprise three phases. Phase I: Conceptual Design runs from January 10 to February 20, 2011. This phase requires an initial design, including an abstract, title and block diagram. Contestants receive a free HPRF Design Challenge kit once a valid entry has been submitted.

Phase II: Hardware Design will run from February 28 to April 24, 2011. This phase requires each contestant to develop and provide proof of concept of a working prototype – for example, as a video or as a measurement report – as well as an accompanying bill-of-materials, schematics, layout file and other design-related material.

Finally, Phase III: Prototype will run from May 2 to May 29, 2011. A group of finalists from EMEA, Asia Pacific and the Americas will enter the Final Prototype Phase, during which each contestant will be given an opportunity to polish his or her design in a regional NXP HPRF design lab, with transportation and accommodation costs covered by NXP. The top three finalists will have an all-expenses-paid trip to IMS2011 and the Grand Prize includes a $3,000 Apple Store® voucher. Registered Design Challenge Community members will also be eligible to rate and vote on design entries, alongside a panel of judges from NXP.

At the launch of the Challenge, John Croteau, Senior Vice President and General Manager, high performance RF and power lighting solutions, NXP Semiconductors, commented, “High Performance RF technologies have traditionally been used to solve the toughest engineering challenges, in applications ranging from satellite receivers, wireless base stations and broadcast transmitters, to ISM, aerospace and defense. The goal of our HPRF Design Challenge is to inspire talented RF engineers to think creatively and bring RF power to new and interesting application areas. In other words: Be daring. Surprise us. And we’ll support you in bringing your concepts to life.”

To find out more information and register, visit: www.hprf-design-challenge.nxp.com.