RF/Wireless Power Amplifiers
An RF/Wireless power amplifier is a type of amplifier used to convert a radio-frequency signal into a larger wireless signal. The signal conversion drives up power to the transmitter antenna. An RF amplifier is usually optimized to have high-efficiency, high-output power compression
Learn more: Download the "Wire Bonding an RFSOE Package using a Gold Ball Bonder" technical paper.
High-power amplifiers (10W-200W) have traditionally been assembled using a gold silicon eutectic die attach system, requiring high bonding temperatures of 370°C. Some RF wireless amplifier applications have adopted lower cost packages with plastic content which cannot handle the high temperatures of the AuSi process. Gold tin (AuSn) is a lower temperature eutectic system with reflow temperature of 280°C, a better suited reflow temperature with only a small process change.
Challenges in Fabricating RF Modules
RF Modules are among the most complex of all electronic devices, consisting of a myriad of discrete components and specialized IC’s designed to run at very high frequencies to satisfy the extended bandwidth requirements of modern telecommunications and computing. Because the effects of stray inductance and capacitance in an electronic circuit become much more pronounced at higher frequencies, the RF module must be designed and fabricated to control these effects.
Digital to analog conversion, and vice-versa, has further complicated the RF package. Higher frequency considerations become the challenge for not just the designer, but also for the process engineer and operator who must consistently build to very tight tolerances. In the world of sub-nanoseconds and operating frequencies soaring over 1 GHz, expertise in this field is more valuable than ever.