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PIN diode switch for high-linearity apps

Posted: 10 Dec 2008     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:PIN diodes  switches  linearity 

PIN diodes are ideal for transmit-receive (TR) switches because of a favourable blend of cost, size, and switching speed. Although the PIN diode in the transmit (Tx) arm can be connected as either series or shunt switching element, the former is potentially more linear. During transmitting, a series PIN switch is biased ON, whereas a shunt PIN is turned OFF. In the shunt connection, the large RF signal voltage modulates the unbiased PIN diode's junction capacitance due to the varactor effect and this generates significantly more distortion. As a result, series PIN switches are preferred in applications that emphasise linearity.

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