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Receiving channel front-end modules for digital antenna arrays


K.V. Boyko, Y.V. Kuznetsov, S.N. Lysenko, S.S. Muratov, V.O. Petin, A.M. Prischenko, A.L. Shlaferov

In the paper, low noise amplifier (LNA) and frequency converter are described. Both are implemented in LTCC. LNA incorporates protection measures against high power input signals: a bandpass filter and power limiter. Filter is implemented in quasi-symmetric stripline, with LTCC as a substrate. Limiter microwave monolithic integrated circuit (MMIC) is fabricated at «RNIIRS». Filter insertion loss is less than 1 dB, VSWR is less than 1,3. Limiter insertion loss is about 0,3 – 0,4 dB, maximum input power is 3 – 5 W, corresponding leakage power is less than 15 mW. LNA gain is 33±1 dB, noise temperature is less than 160 K. LNA size is 20 × 20 mm. Image suppression in converter is achieved using quarature mixer and compact high-Q LTCC preselector filter. Mixer MMIC is fabricated at «RNIIRS», and it’s characteristics are comparable to those of available off-the-shelf mixers from other companies. Converter gain ripple within 30 MHz band is less than 1,5 dB. Image suppression is better than 42 dB. Output intermodulation suppression is 69 dB, when measured at 0 dB output power. Overall front-end OIP3 is more than +37,5 dBm. Within a batch of 3000 frond-ends (LNA+converter) overall gain spread was ±1 dB, when measured at the same frequency setting. LTCC technology and one-sided automatic element assembly allowed to minimize production cost and ensure stability and repeatability of front-end parameters.

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