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RF to Millimeter-wave Front-end Component Design for 5G NR

5G New Radio (NR) networks represent the next milestone in enhanced mobile communications, targeting more traffic, increased capacity, reduced latency and energy consumption, made possible through multiple enabling technologies. To achieve 5G NR performance targets, these communication systems must improve spatial efficiency using multiple-in/multiple-out (MIMO) and beam-forming antenna arrays while increasing bandwidth using millimeter-wave (mmWave) spectrum and carrier aggregation (CA) techniques for greater spectral efficiency in the sub-6 GHz spectrum band. Each of these technologies present numerous design challenges for engineers developing and integrating components in the RF/mmWave front-end. This talk will look at some of the design challenges in developing high-frequency components that support 5G NR communications - from beam-steering antenna arrays to mmWave MMIC power amplifiers using gallium-nitride (GaN) semiconductor technology. An overview of typical 5G NR system requirements will be followed by a discussion of how these requirements impact component performance specifications and physical implementation. Several case studies will also be presented in which designers overcame design and integration challenges using RF/mmWave simulation software. Presented by: David Vye, Cadence