GaAs Proves Reliable At High Operating Temperatures

Dec. 15, 2006
Manufacturers of Gallium-Arsenide (GaAs) and other semiconductor devices use an accelerated life test to check the reliability of MESFETs. Such tests provide information about failure mechanisms, activation energies, and failure rates. With these tests, ...

Manufacturers of Gallium-Arsenide (GaAs) and other semiconductor devices use an accelerated life test to check the reliability of MESFETs. Such tests provide information about failure mechanisms, activation energies, and failure rates. With these tests, an application note from WJ Communications, Inc. (San Jose, CA) works to show that catastrophic failure may occur at conservative channel temperatures in excess of 220°C.

The four-page application note, which is titled “GaAs Reliability at High Operating Temperatures,” begins by reviewing some of the existing literature on this subject. According to data on GaAs MESFET reliability, the main failure mechanisms involve gate metallization, Schottky contact, and source/drain ohmic contacts. The dominant failure mode is channel related.

With high-temperature life tests, most physical/chemical processes can be accelerated with temperature at a rate that is correlated to a constant: the activation energy. Normal thermal-analysis techniques are listed. In addition, equations are provided for MESFET failure mechanisms. The paper shows that MESFET reliability and channel temperature are strongly linked. Under normal RF and DC conditions, the channel temperature can be in excess of 250°C without causing instantaneous catastrophic failure.

Although the company has performed much RF testing, the application note includes only two tests and their results: MMIC reliability under RF drive and FET life test. The tests do not uncover any failure mechanisms due to an excessive channel temperature of 203°C. In addition, the devices are shown to suffer an ambient temperature of 220°C without channel breakdown.

WJ Communications, Inc., 401 River Oaks Parkway, San Jose, CA 95134-1916; (408) 577-6200, FAX: (408) 577-6621, Internet: www.wj.com

Sponsored Recommendations

Designing Wireless Modular Robots Using Advanced 3D Printing Precision

March 28, 2024
Learn how researchers at Southern Methodist University used 3D printing to fabricate wireless modular robots.

Microelectromechanical 3D Printing Resources

March 28, 2024
Check out our curated list of microelectromechanical 3D printing resources and see how PµSL technology offers freedom and speed.

Understanding 3D Printing Tolerances: A Guide to Achieving Precision in Additive Manufacturing

March 28, 2024
In the world of additive manufacturing, precision is paramount. One crucial aspect of ensuring precision in 3D printing is understanding tolerances. In this article, we’ll explore...

Micro 3D Printing Helps Fabricate Microwells for Microgravity

March 28, 2024
Learn how micro 3D printing helped to fabricate miniaturized vessels called hydrowells for culturing 3D cellular spheroids for microgravity.