GaN Power Amplifiers - Web Classroom

Course 228

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There are a number of semiconductor technologies being used for power amplifier design. This course introduces students to the GaN transistor, its properties, various structures, discrete and MMIC devices. The properties of GaN will be presented showing the advantage of these devices over other materials for power amplifier applications. Material will be presented on GaN HEMT transistors, geometries, semiconductor processes and structures with associated breakdown voltages, power capability, gain, efficiency, and frequency performance. Guidelines for reliable operation will be presented considering device junction temperature including thermal management techniques. MMIC matching and biasing elements will be shown. The nonlinear models of GaN HEMT devices necessary for the Computer Aided Design ( CAD) of power amplifiers will be presented. Design considerations for both constant amplitude envelope signals as well as the non-constant amplitude envelope signals will be presented. Design procedures will be shown for various GaN PA examples including different classes of operation as well as the popular Doherty PA. The class offers approximately one day's worth of material, but is typically offered in three 2-hour sessions (9:00am to 11:00am Pacific time) via web-classroom. Each daily session is a live online event but the recording can be made available on demand and online to support students requiring a more convenient viewing time. For on demand students, simply register online or by contacting the office and you will receive the login details for 30 day access to the recording. Please feel free to contact us by email if you need more information -

This course is intended for registered individual students only. Please contact us for group rates at or 650-949-3300. Recording, copying, or re-transmission of classroom material is prohibited.

Students will receive a signed Certificate of Completion on request.

Learning objectives

Upon completing the course you will be able to:

  • Understand GaN semiconductor technology, its properties, and its advantage over other materials
  • Learn how the GaN FET geometry and semiconductor processing affect the PA breakdown voltages, gain, power capability, efficiency, and frequency performance.
  • Choose the correct nonlinear model to design the PA
  • Understand design considerations for constant amplitude envelope signals as well as non-constant envelop amplitude signals
  • Learn design procedures for GaN PA various classes of operation and the Doherty PA using modern simulators.

Target Audience

Semiconductor, component, and system designers including engineering managers will benefit from this course. RF/wireless engineers who want to understand the performance enhancements of GaN PAs. Application and product engineers supporting customers in areas relating to GaN PAs. PA circuit designers who wish to learn design techniques for nonlinear GaN PAs. Basic knowledge of microwave measurements and transmission line (Smith Chart) theory is assumed.


The following topics are spread over three 2-hour sessions

GaN Semiconductor and GaN HEMT PA Capabilities
 • GaN semiconductor properties • GaN HEMT transistors • geometries • semiconductor processes • breakdown voltages • thermal resistance • power capability • reliability • thermal management techniques • gain • efficiency • frequency performance
GaN FET PA Devices and Models
 • GaN HEMT vendors and devices • comparison of MMIC devices and performance • MMIC matching and biasing elements • nonlinear GaN HEMT models
GaN FET PA Design Considerations
 • Constant amplitude envelope design considerations • non-constant amplitude envelop ( CDMA, WCDMS, LTE) design considerations and solutions
GaN FET PA Design Examples
 •  PA design for various classes of operation as well as the popular Doherty amplifier using the latest nonlinear CAD circuit programs