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Efficient multi-stage load modulation radio frequency power amplifier for green radio frequency front end

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4 Author(s)

The road towards the reduction in the carbon footprint associated with power-hungry wireless communication devices will require a holistic design approach to ensure that energy saving can be achieved throughout the entire system. The information and communication technology today accounted for 3 and 2% global power consumption and global CO2 emissions, respectively, where a significant portion is a result of the power consumption in the radio frequency (RF) power amplifier device. Moreover, tomorrow amplifiers will need to be reconfigurable and host a plethora of modulated signals to support effective signal processing. Therefore performance metrics such as linearity, power efficiency and their trade-off should be at the forefront of the RF power amplifier design. This study proposes an energy-efficient power amplifier design based on the Doherty configuration as part of a green RF front end for mobile WiMAX. The authors extend the classical Doherty to incorporate a three-stage load modulation design with a proposed new output power combiner. The performance of the three-stage load modulation RF power amplifier is compared with the legacy two-stage load modulation technique. The experimental results show that 30 dBm output power can be achieved with 67 power-added efficiency, which represents a 14 improvement over the current state-of-the-art system while meeting the power output requirements for mobile WiMAX.

Published in:

Science, Measurement & Technology, IET  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 3 )