White Paper: RF/Microwave EDA Software Design Flow Considerations for PA MMIC Design

AWR published a new white paper about the design flow and its essential features for most PA design projects. The article presents a design of a simple, Class A GaAs pHEMT monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) PA using AWR’s Microwave Office high-frequency design software. The title of the technical paper is RF/Microwave EDA Software Design Flow Considerations for PA MMIC Design.

RF/Microwave EDA Software Design Flow Considerations for PA MMIC Design

The evolution of integrated circuit technology demands that designers in this field adapt to ever-changing manufacturing techniques driven by performance, cost, benefit, and risk considerations. Today’s power amplifier (PA) designer working in solid state technologies must navigate a plethora of available processes, including gallium arsenide (GaAs), gallium nitride (GaN) and silicon carbide (SiC) pseudomorphic high electron mobility transistor (PHEMT), radio-frequency complementary metal oxide semiconductor (RF CMOS), and GaAs or silicon germanium (SiGe) heterojunction bipolar transistor (HBT), to name just a few. Similarly, different design challenges demand different amplifier classes and/or topologies like Class AB, Darlingtons, switch-mode PAs, and digital predistortion. Moving from one technology to another implies that certain skills and knowledge are transportable and transferable.

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Moving from one technology to another requires that certain skills and knowledge be transportable and transferable. The most basic of these skills is the effective use of EDA tools for designing the MMIC itself. In particular, PA designers need a strategy, design flow, and guidelines for how to start with specifications and a PDK and get to a point where the more complicated design requirements can be tackled.

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