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A 500 °C Active Down-Conversion Mixer in Silicon Carbide Bipolar Technology
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2540-8726
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS), Electronics, Integrated devices and circuits.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7845-3988
University of Arkansas.
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS), Micro and Nanosystems.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8853-0967
Show others and affiliations
2018 (English)In: IEEE Electron Device Letters, ISSN 0741-3106, E-ISSN 1558-0563, Vol. 39, no 6, p. 855-858Article in journal (Refereed) Accepted
Abstract [en]

This letter presents an active down-conversion mixer for high-temperature communication receivers. The mixer is based on an in-house developed 4H-SiC BJT and down-converts a narrow-band RF input signal centered around 59 MHz to an intermediate frequency of 500 kHz. Measurements show that the mixer operates from room temperature up to 500 °C. The conversion gain is 15 dB at 25 °C, which decreases to 4.7 dB at 500 °C. The input 1-dB compression point is 1 dBm at 25 °C and −2.5 dBm at 500 °C. The mixer is biased with a collector current of 10 mA from a 20 V supply and has a maximum DC power consumption of 204 mW. High-temperature reliability evaluation of the mixer shows a conversion gain degradation of 1.4 dB after 3-hours of continuous operation at 500 °C.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE Press, 2018. Vol. 39, no 6, p. 855-858
Keywords [en]
4H-SiC BJTs, high-temperature, RF, mixer
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Research subject
Electrical Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-228486DOI: 10.1109/LED.2018.2829628ISI: 000437086800018Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85045754083OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-228486DiVA, id: diva2:1210001
Funder
Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation
Note

QC 20180601

Available from: 2018-05-25 Created: 2018-05-25 Last updated: 2019-04-24Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. High-Temperature Radio Circuits in Silicon Carbide Bipolar Technology
Open this publication in new window or tab >>High-Temperature Radio Circuits in Silicon Carbide Bipolar Technology
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

High-temperature electronics find many niche applications in downhole drilling, aviation, automotive and future exploration of inner planets like Venus and Mercury. Past studies have shown the potential of silicon carbide (SiC) electronics for catering these extreme temperature applications. In particular, analog, digital and mixed-signal integrated circuits, based on in-house SiC bipolar technology, have been shown to operate successfully for temperatures as high as 500 oC. This thesis aims at exploring the potential of in-house SiC bipolar technology for realizing high-temperature radio frequency (RF) circuits.

To that end, the in-house SiC bipolar junction transistors (BJTs) are first characterized up to 300 oC for RF figures of merit like unity current gain bandwidth and unity power gain bandwidth. The measurement results showed the feasibility of the current batch of SiC BJTs for developing RF circuits operating at low-end of very high frequency (VHF) band. Thereafter, three fundamental blocks of a high-temperature radio receiver, i.e. an intermediate-frequency amplifier, an oscillator and a down-conversion mixer were implemented. Firstly, an intermediate-frequency amplifier has been designed and measurement results demonstrated operation up to 251 oC. The proposed amplifier achieved a gain, input, and output matching of 16 dB, -7.5 dB and -11.2 dB, respectively, at 54.6 MHz and 251 oC. Next, 500 oC operation of an active down-conversion mixer has been exhibited. Measurements have shown that the conversion gain of the proposed mixer is 4.7 dB at 500 oC. Lastly, a negative resistance oscillator has been designed and tested successfully up to 400 oC. It has been shown that at 400 oC, the proposed oscillator delivers an output power of 8.4 dBm into a 50 Ω load.

In addition to SiC BJTs, the aforementioned circuits also employed spiral inductors implemented on PCBs, commercially available ceramic capacitors and thick-film resistors. Therefore, this thesis presents the evaluation of passives to assess their feasibility for high temperature operation. This work also identifies and addresses several challenges associated with the development flow of high-temperature RF circuits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2019. p. viii-xix, 82
Series
TRITA-EECS-AVL ; 2019:40
Keywords
4H-SiC, active down-conversion mixer, BJT, EM simulations, silicon carbide, high-temperature, IF amplifier, LTCC, negative resistance oscillator, passives, RF circuits
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Research subject
Information and Communication Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-249972 (URN)978-91-7873-170-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2019-05-29, Sal-C, Forum, Isafjordgatan 39, Kista, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, 66167
Note

QC 20190425

Available from: 2019-04-25 Created: 2019-04-24 Last updated: 2019-04-26Bibliographically approved

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Hussain, Muhammad WaqarElahipanah, HosseinSchröder, StephanRodriguez, SaulMalm, B. GunnarRusu, Ana

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