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RFICs and MMICs Aim at SWaP Targets (Download)

Feb. 22, 2022

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Solid-state devices and circuits have long been mainstays of aerospace and defense electronic systems, even in the face of rising signal frequencies and power levels. As military system designers become more concerned with smaller size, weight, and power (SWaP), they have looked to RF integrated circuits (RFICs) and monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs) to provide more high-frequency functionality with higher efficiency. Among their applications are communications, electronic-warfare (EW), and radar systems, including those moving into space aboard satellites.

The trend in RFICs and MMICs for aerospace and defense use has been greater integration at higher frequencies, whether as bare die or in packages. Although major defense contractors, such as BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon Technologies have their own gallium-nitride (GaN) and gallium-arsenide (GaAs) foundries, they rely on a variety of sources for different RFIC and MMICs to accomplish more with less in modern electronic systems.