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p-i-n-Diode millimeter phase shifter in a waveguide structure


M. D. Parnes – Dr.Sc. (Eng.), Chief Engineer, “Rezonans” plc. E-mail: O. G. Vendik – Dr.Sc. (Eng.), Professor, St. Petersburg State Electrotechnical University “LETI”. E-mail:

In this paper a calculation procedure has been proposed to design the p-i-n-diode phase shifter based on the waveguide transmission line. Such phase shifter combines the advantages of the p-i-n-diodes, which are characterized by small size, low power control circuits, and the advantages of waveguide phase shifters providing significant power (35 W) and low insertion loss (2,5 dB) at a frequency of 33 GHz. It is reasonable to consider a well known periodically loaded-line phase shifter using p-i-n-diodes as switching devices. For the operational frequency band of 10% the loaded-line phase shifter is often used for 45 degrees or lower phase shift bits, in such a case only, one can provide good matching, low loss, and constant amplitude/phase characteristic. By spacing the reactive loads approximately a quarter-wavelength apart, the amplitude perturbation can be minimized and equalized in both states. The tunable load is designed as a series connection of three p-i-n-diodes and two inductive rods. The inductive segment can be performed not only as a rod of radius r, but as a section of a planar transmission line. A small section of the tunable load of length s belongs to the p-i-n-diode with its contact pads. The entire length of the tunable load h is equal to the height of the waveguide. The structure of a switchable load has been presented. It is described by series connection of ABCD-matrices. The matrices A1, A3, and A5 correspond to the connections of p-i-n-diode and contact pads. We consider two ways of simulation of the switchable load impedance: 1 – the analytical model, which uses the set of formulas presented above; 2 – the full wave 3-D electromagnetic field analysis. The results of the simulation using the analytical model and the full wave analysis are in good agreement. The p-i-n-diode of Si group can withstand 50 V of microwave voltage drop at the frequency of 35 GHz. Thus, the developed phase shifter can work under power of 35 W in a pulse mode operation. The five-bit waveguide phase shifter of Ka-band has been designed using the above-mentioned procedure. The 11° and 22° bits have been designed using a printed circuit board (PCB) technology. The PCB is located at a distance a0 = 0,085w from the narrow wall of the waveguide. These two bits have been realized using the same structure containing the stub designed as a transmission line section periodically loaded by three silicon p-i-n-diodes with beam leads. For the 11° bit, the diodes with capacitance Ca = 0,02 pF have been used and for the 22° bit the capacitance Ca = 0,036 pF according equations has been required. The distance between the nearest-neighbor sections is likewise one quarter of the guiding wavelength. The higher order bits of 45°, 90° and 180° have been made on the PCB installed at a distance of a0 = 0,2w from the narrow wall of the waveguide. The conductors have been printed on the foil-coated dielectric with the thickness of 0,127 mm of Taconic. The intrinsic resistance of the used p-i-n-diodes is Ra = 1 Ohm. Finally the laboratory sample of five-bit phase shifter designed using the proposed procedure has been fabricated and measured.


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