Over the past year, mixer experts at Custom MMIC have been exploring the use of gallium nitride (GaN) processes as the basis for extremely linear RF mixers. Deducing that the high linearity performance of GaN power amplifiers may cross-over to other critical microwave components, Custom MMIC engineers have gone through several iterations of GaN mixer technologies and typologies with several of their key foundry partners.
Ultimately, the fruits of their efforts have led to passive GaN mixer designs that surpass all gallium arsenide (GaAs) passive mixer designs in terms of the ratio of input third-order intercept point (IIP3) to local oscillator (LO) drive – a figure-of-merit Custom MMIC is coining as Linear Efficiency. From S-band to K-band (2 GHz to 19 GHz) these new passive GaN mixers are demonstrating IIP3 figures well above 30 dBm, LO drive levels around 20 dBm, and linear efficiencies above 10 dB.
Download the tech brief, “Reach New Levels of Linearity in Passive Mixers with GaN Technology.”