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18 February 2014

Raytheon enters 15th year of GaN technology development and system integration

Raytheon Company of Waltham, MA., USA has embarked on its 15th year of gallium nitride (GaN) technology development and system integration. In 1999, Raytheon commenced research in GaN at the Raytheon Foundry in Andover, MA. Today, Raytheon demonstrates the maturity of GaN technology that extends the warfighter’s reach into the battle space by increasing radar ranges, sensitivity and search capabilities.

“GaN technologies are transforming the way we address the evolving needs of our customers,” says Paul Ferraro, VP of Advanced Technology for Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) business in Tewksbury, MA. “Through partnerships with the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), we are harnessing the revolutionary power, efficiency and performance improvements that GaN provides in programs today including AMDR (the US Navy’s Air and Missile Defense Radar program) and Next Generation Jammer. We are optimistic about its impact on future initiatives like 3DELRR (Three Dimensional Expeditionary Long-Range Radar) and others.”

Notable milestones include:

  • In 2000, Raytheon fabricated its first GaN transistor, the building block for monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs, operating at frequencies of 300MHz-300GHz), which typically perform functions such as microwave mixing, power amplification, low-noise amplification and high-frequency switching.
  • From 2005-2008, Raytheon worked closely with DARPA on the Wide Bandgap Semiconductor (WBGS) Phase 2 program, meeting all transistor-level technical metrics. The high-power-density, high-efficiency process that emerged during this time helped form the underpinning for current microwave GaN production processes.
  • In 2009, Raytheon released GaN for production in its 4” Trusted compound semiconductor foundry.
  • Raytheon was honored by the Office of the Secretary of Defense for successful completion of a Defense Production Act (DPA) Title III Gallium Nitride (GaN) production improvement program in 2013, a result of more than a decade of government and Raytheon investment in GaN RF circuit technology.
  • Raytheon has demonstrated that the reliability of its GaN technology exceeded the requirement for insertion into production military systems. This maturation of GaN resulted in a Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) production capability of ‘8’, the highest level obtained by any organization in the defense industry for this technology. MRL is a measure used by the OSD and major companies worldwide to assess the maturity of manufacturing readiness.
  • Also through the OSD Title III program, GaN yield was improved by more than 300% and cost was reduced more than 75% for MMICs.

See related items:

Raytheon wins $279.4m contract for Technology Development phase of US Navy’s Next Generation Jammer program

US government honors Raytheon for completing Title III GaN production improvement program

Raytheon awarded $29.3m Phase 3 contract for wide-bandgap program

Tags: Raytheon Radar GaN

Visit: www.raytheon.com

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