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Intermodulation-distortion performance of silicon-carbide Schottky-barrier RF mixer diodes

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2 Author(s)
Simons, Rainee N. ; NASA Glenn Res. Center, Cleveland, OH, USA ; Neudeck, Philip G.

This paper presents the fabrication and characterization of silicon carbide (SiC) Schottky-barrier mixer diodes of 25- and 50-μm diameter on a conducting 4H-SiC wafer. The single-balanced mixer circuits with a diode in each arm (two diodes total) were tested at 200 MHz (VHF) and 1.5 GHz [global positioning system (GPS)]. The experiments show that the conversion loss/input third-order intercept point (IP3) are 8.0 dB/+25 dBm and 7.5 dB/+22 dBm at these frequencies, respectively. The measured second-order intercept point (IP2) over the VHF frequency band is +38 dBm. The above conversion-loss values are about the same as that of commercially available single-balanced mixers with silicon Schottky-barrier diodes. However, to achieve a comparable input IP3 performance with Si Schottky-barrier diodes, a more complex mixer design involving double-balanced mixers with two diodes in each arm of a quad (eight diodes total) is required. Applications include RF-based navigational instruments on board commercial/general aviation aircraft and GPSs.

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Microwave Theory and Techniques, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:51 ,  Issue: 2 )