Advantages of GaN in 5G | Disadvantages of GaN

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of GaN. It mentions GaN advantages (i.e. benefits) in 5G and GaN disadvantages (i.e.drawbacks). GaN and 5G related links are also mentioned.

Following are the silent features of GaN (Gallium Nitride).
• GaN offers bandgap of about 3.4 eV (Electron Volts). This is wider compare to other semiconductor devices such as GaAs (1.4 eV) and Si (1.1 eV). Hence it will have higher breakdown field. Due to high breakdown voltage (80V) it can operate at higher voltages.
• Ga is chemical element with 31 atomic number. GaN is formed by forming gallium and nitrogen atoms arranged in wurtzite crystal structure. GaN is grown at high temperature by MOCVD or MBE techniques on SiC substrates for RF applications.
• It offers high power density and superior thermal conductivity. Due to this fact, GaN on SiC does not become hot as compare to GaAs or Si in dissipating the same amount of power. Hence it is more reliable.
• Electrons in GaN offer very high saturation velocity. Hence GaN devices deliver much high current density when they are combined with large charge carriers.
• There are various semiconductor processes used in development of GaN. The right process based GaN device is choosen for appropriate application as per specifications desired.

GaN Advantages in 5G | Benefits of GaN

Following GaN advantages are utilized in 5G wireless technology.
➨ It offers ultra wide band linearization, small package and high power. Hence is is suitable for MIMO/BF features employed in 5G wireless applications.
➨ Due to low voltage operation, small size and high linearity it can be used in small cells/DAS architecture based 5G network deployment.
➨ Due to high temperature and high reliability, it can be used in wide variety of devices such as cars, cameras etc.
➨ Due to its high frequency and high efficiency, it is used for 5G mmwave applications.
➨Millimeter wave bands need high directional beamforming technology. This is achieved using large number of active antenna elements. GaN is ideal for this application due to its small package size and powerful performance.

GaN disadvantages or drawbacks

Following are GaN disadvantages.
➨It offers high cost due to higher material cost and costly processes involved in its manufacturing.
➨Currently small signal MMIC and LNA market is dominated by GaAs devices. It will take some time for GaN to take over this market due to cost factor.

Conclusion: Researchers are working towards lowering the cost of GaN development and manufacturing. Once this is done, GaN will capture market in various domains including wireless, electronics, medical, automobile etc.

GaN and 5G related links

Advantages of GaN and LDMOS
difference between GaN and LDMOS
difference between GaN and GaAs in PA
5G tutorial
Difference between 4G and 5G
5G network architecture
5G millimeter wave
5G channel sounding

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