An E-band Voltage Variable Attenuator Realised on a Low Cost 0.13um PHEMT Process

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  • Author: Liam Devlin and Graham Pearson
E-band spectrum at 71 to 76GHz and 81 to 86GHz offers worldwide availability and wide bandwidths under a light license system. This makes it very attractive for very high data rate applications such as cellular back-haul. Component availability is currently relatively limited and cost relatively high but this is starting to change. This paper describes the development of an E-band Voltage Variable Attenuator (VVA) realised on a low cost 0.13?m gate length PHEMT process. The core VVA is a single-ended design that operates from a control voltage of between -2V and +0.6V. Simulated insertion loss is <1dB at 50GHz rising to 2.8dB at 90GHz. The E-band design uses two of the core circuit in a balanced configuration for improved return loss and increased linearity. It has an insertion loss of <4dB over 71 to