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A low-noise microwave oscillator employing a self-aligned AlGaAs/GaAs HBT

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4 Author(s)
M. Madihian ; NEC Corp., Kawasaki, Japan ; N. Hayama ; S. R. Lesage ; K. Honjo

A study is made of the application of heterojunction bipolar transistors (HBTs) to low-noise microwave circuits. Design considerations and the low-noise performance of a Ku-band free-running oscillator using a self-aligned AlGaAs/GaAs HBT are described. The device has a novel structure in which, by utilizing SiO 2 sidewalls, the base surface area, which is the main cause of low-frequency noise, is drastically reduced. For a collector current of 1 mA, the fabricated device has base current noise power densities of 4×10-20, 6×10-21, and 2.5×10-21 A2/Hz at baseband frequencies of 1, 10, and 100 kHz, respectively. A prototype oscillator operating at 15.5 GHz has a measured output power of 6 dBm and SSB FM noise power densities of -34 dBc/Hz at 1 kHz, -65 dBc/Hz at 10 kHz, and -96 dBc/Hz at 100 kHz off-carrier, without using high-Q elements such as a dielectric resonator. The results of this study demonstrate the suitability of HBTs for low-phase-noise microwave and millimeter-wave oscillator applications

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques  (Volume:37 ,  Issue: 11 )