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Examining packaging options for RF power ICs

Posted: 12 Aug 2010     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:packaging technology  IC packaging options  RF power IC 

RF power requirements for commercial wireless applications have evolved dramatically over the past few decades. Today, base station manufacturers demand power ICs capable of offering higher linearity to support higher order modulation schemes, higher average output power levels, and wider operating bandwidths. At the same time increasingly competitive markets demand power transistors capable of reducing operating costs and driving down base station energy consumption.

What is often overlooked is the pivotal role packaging has played in this rapid evolution. More robust packaging technology has helped RF power IC makers support the higher frequencies and bandwidths today's designers require. In addition, package suppliers have helped base station designers meet growing market demands for lower cost systems.

Similarly, as system integration trends continue to advance, lighter weight packaging technologies have helped RF designers develop new layouts for tower mounted electronics. This article takes a look at general packaging trends for RF power ICs, reviews some of the trade-offs inherent in today's popular packaging options and examines how recent advances are opening up new opportunities for RF designers to meet next-generation design requirements.

View the PDF document for more information.

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