Impact of AlGaN/GaN Interface and Passivation on the Robustness of Low-Noise Amplifiers
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020

Poststress dc characteristics of AlGaN/GaN HEMTs can be used to study the effect of high-power stress on the noise figure (NF) and gain of low-noise amplifiers (LNAs) subjected to large input overdrives. This enables a shift from circuit- to transistor-level measurements to investigate the impact of variations in HEMT design parameters on the robustness (including both recovery time and survivability) by mimicking LNA operation. Using this method, a tradeoff between survivability and recovery time is demonstrated for different AlGaN/GaN interface profiles (sharp interface, standard interface, and AlN interlayer). Furthermore, the impact of different surface passivation schemes (Si-rich, Si-poor, and bilayer SiNx) on robustness is investigated. The bilayer passivation, which features low leakage current and small gain compression under overdrive stress, exhibits relatively weak survivability. The mechanisms influencing the robustness are analyzed based on transistor physics. The short recovery time is mainly due to impeding the injection of hot electrons into surface traps and high reverse current, whereas the survivability is dependent on the local or global peak electrical fields around the gate under high power stress.

phase noise

GaN technology

Gallium nitride

recovery time


robust low-noise amplifier (LNA)





Logic gates


Tongde Huang

Nanjing University of Science and Technology

Olle Axelsson


Johan Bergsten

Chalmers, Mikroteknologi och nanovetenskap, Mikrovågselektronik

Mattias Thorsell

Chalmers, Mikroteknologi och nanovetenskap, Mikrovågselektronik

Niklas Rorsman

Chalmers, Mikroteknologi och nanovetenskap, Mikrovågselektronik

IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices

0018-9383 (ISSN) 15579646 (eISSN)

Vol. 67 6 2297-2303 9080568


Bearbetnings-, yt- och fogningsteknik

Annan materialteknik

Annan elektroteknik och elektronik



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