60 GHz Single-Chip Front-End MMICs and Systems for Multi-Gb/s Wireless Communication

Single-chip 60 GHz transmitter (TX) and receiver (RX) MMICs have been designed and characterized in a 0.15 m (120 GHz/ MAX 200 GHz) GaAs mHEMT MMIC process. This paper describes the second generation of single-chip TX and RX MMICs together with work on packaging (e.g., flip-chip) and system measurements.

Compared to the first generation of the designs in a commercial pHEMT technology, the MMICs presented in this paper show the same high level of integration but occupy smaller chip area and have higher gain and output power at only half the DC power consumption. The system operates with a LO signal in the range of 7–8 GHz. This LO signal is multiplied in an integrated multiply-by-eight (X8) LO multiplier chain, resulting in an IF center frequency of 2.5 GHz. Packaging and interconnects are discussed and as an alternative to wire bonding, flip-chip assembly tests are presented and discussed. System measurements are also described where bit error rate (BER) and eye diagrams are measured when the presented TX and RX MMICs transmits and receives a modulated signal. A data rate of 1.5 Gb/s with simple ASK modulation was achieved, restricted by the measurement setup rather than the TX and RX MMICs. These tests indicate that the presented MMICs are especially well suited for transmission and reception of wireless signals at data rates of several Gb/s.


S. E. Gunnarsson, C. Kärnfelt, H. Zirath, R. Kozhuharov, D. Kuylenstierna, C. Fager, M. Ferndahl, B. Hansson, A. Alping, and P. Hallbjörner

IEEE Journal of Solid State Circuits, Vol. 42, pp. 1143-1157, May. 2007