Industrial Electronics

Video: Qorvo simplifies GaN PA biasing

22 June 2022

Radio frequency solutions provider Qorvo has announced the availability of the ACT41000-104-REF1, a gallium nitride (GaN) power amplifier (PA) biasing reference design that enhances the design and testing of Qorvo’s GaN PAs.

GaN devices are depletion-mode field effect transistors that require a negative gate voltage during operation. In systems using GaN PAs, a specific bias sequencing is required: a negative gate voltage must be applied before increasing the drain bias voltage to protect the device from damage.

Qorvo’s ACT41000-104-REF1 provides built-in configurability that enables it to bias a variety of GaN PAs and auto-calibrate the system. It integrates the power metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors and current digital-to-analog converter to allow the device to precisely detect the PA quiescent drain current. The design uses power management to simplify the GaN biasing procedure.

The ACT41000 can operate from an input voltage between 4.5 V to 40 V, which enables it to generate aSource: QorvoSource: Qorvo regulated adjustable output voltage up to 24 V at 4 A in small steps of 12.5 millivolts. It comes with an evaluation platform and GUI, allowing customers to adjust the output drain voltage, quiescent and maximum drain current, PA device current and voltage protection, switching frequency and other features to optimize GaN PA performance.

This procedure takes place every time a user powers up the system, providing auto-tuning under conditions such as aging or temperature fluctuations. This makes testing easier and more automated. The ACT41000’s built-in configurability allows it to bias a variety of Qorvo GaN PAs across many markets, including satellite communications, 5G, radar and more.

David Briggs, senior director of Qorvo’s programmable power management products, said, “Qorvo is dedicated to simplifying the design and testing of real-world solutions for our customers and suppliers. This newest integration of Qorvo’s power products into our GaN portfolio is just the tip of the iceberg of our planned portfolio expansion.”

The video tutorial above helps explain how the ACT41000 is specifically designed to integrate with Qorvo’s industry-leading GaN products.

Connect with Qorvo at The International Microwave Symposium, IMS2022, June 21 to June 23 in Denver, Colorado. For more information about Qorvo's solutions, announcements and meeting inquiries, visit the Qorvo IMS 2022 landing page.

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