The increasing popularity of the bi-annual RF & Microwave Society meetings was clearly demonstrated by a record gathering of engineers, academics and business people from across the industry at the April 2014 ARMMS conference held at the Oxford Belfry, Nr Thame, UK.

Although the continued interest in amplifier efficiency was demonstrated by the number of papers during the Slipstream Design sponsored conference that focused on this topic, including the winner of the best paper award, Understanding the 3 level Doherty by Mike Roberts of Slipstream Design, the subjects covered ranged from an FMCW MIMO Radar Sensor to a Prescription for THz Transistor Characterisation, by Dylan Williams of NIST.

An innovation at the spring conference was a panel session titled: RF Semiconductor Technology Road Map – are we changing lanes, or adding them to increase capacity?. Participants from Analog Devices, MACOM, NXP, Peregrine and UMS gave their perspectives on the movements and directions of technology in the future, which was followed by a lively audience discussion; continuing during the traditional, ever popular Society Dinner.

The setting for the panel discussion was well prepared by a presentation by Terry Edwards, MMIC Futures, looking at the current size and state of the market, the key players and asking some probing questions about what developments we can expect to see over the next five and even ten years.

A regular participant at ARMMS, Liam Devlin of Plextek-RFI gave a clear and concise presentation, The Future of MM-Wave Packaging, adding knowledge to an area often taken for granted but having critical implications for performance. Of particular note were the 3-D structures used for antenna within package and the creation of coaxial lines from bond wires.

University participation was again high with two papers each from Cardiff and Imperial; ARMMS provides sponsorships for up to two students per conference who are presenting papers. The conference was complemented by an associated table-top trade exhibition.