Workplan › Work Package 5

WP5: Smart Q-band Radio Frequency Module

Leader Participants
TCF BLW, SYS

The main objective of this work package is to provide a Q-band (40,5 - 43,5 GHz) radio module with innovative mass-production compatible methods, developed in this work package, and which will then be the worldwide state-of-the-art.

This work package will focus on three main points:

Up-converter Chip set Development

The Q-band Radio Frequency Module uses Up and Down converters, which are integrated on the Node Terminal Equipment Transceiver, as shown in the figure below.

Figure 1

Figure 1. Transceiver Architecture

Existing chip sets did not match gain and LO leakage. In this work package, novel chip sets for Up conversion have been developed by BLUWAN. These new chip sets improve the gain, achieving the 18-dBm target gain.

Several layouts were investigated and electrical tests undertaken to set the gain response with regard to power input on each stage of amplification and RF mixer. The obtained results are compliant with previous requirement. LO leakage will be solved with a new filter integrated after the Up Converter on the System in Package (SIP) product.

Figure 2

Figure 2. Electrical test feature

Figure 3

Figure 3. Gain response and Pout output

The electrical responses are summarized on the table below:

  Layout 41 Layout 47 Requirement
P1 dB 19 - 19,7 19 - 19,4 18 dB
Gain mini 10 10 8 dB
RL FI (dB) -7,5 -7,5 -8
Power 250 - 300 mW 250 - 300 mW 380 mW

Taking into account these results, the proposed Up Converter chip set will be used for SIP development.

40 - 44 GHz Circulator

Transceiver (TRX) RF Module for SARABAND is dedicated to offer Q-band transmission and reception capability on a same component (SIP). Therefore, a 40-45 GHz Isolator/Circulator (I/C) providing separation between TX and Rx functions is a major challenge for the transceiver functionality.

Several I/C devices, whose design is illustrated in Figure 1.b, were tested using a specific test feature (Figure 1.a).

Figure 1

Figure 1. a) I/C device; b) I/C design

Electrical characteristics targets are:

Work with a supplier provides the conception and manufacturing of an I/C device. First step approach gives a shift to lower bandwidth. The second step is centered on 42 GHz. Loss are < 1,5 dB and adaptation better than 12 dB on 40-43,5 GHz bandwidth (Figure 2 - 5).

Figure 2

Figure 2. First step conception: Loss (dB)

Figure 3

Figure 3. Second step conception: Loss (dB)

Figure 4

Figure 4. First step conception: S11

Figure 5

Figure 5. Second step conception: S11

Progress on Q-band Radio Frequency Modules

The SARABAND Project has developed three RF modules (Transmitter, Receiver, Transceiver) for the Q-band network demonstrator. These modules use advanced GaAsā€based MMIC elements (up converter and down converter) and benefit from SIP technology integration to reduce the PCB footprint. Actually, thanks to the use of SIP the chip sets, filter and antenna interconnection are integrated on a sole substrate, resulting in loss reduction.

The electrical characteristics of these modules have been tested on the 3-GHz bandwidth (40,5 - 43,5 GHz) at the output of the antenna connector. The table below shows the obtained values.

  P1 output Gain
Transmitter (Tx) > 25 dBm -
Receiver (Rx) - > 24 dB
Transceiver 16-17 dBm (Tx) > 24 dB (Rx)