HIGH LINEARITY UNIVERSAL LNA DESIGNS FOR NEXT GENERATION WIRELESS APPLICATIONS
Design of the next generation (4G) systems is one of the most active and important area of research and development in wireless communications. The 2G and 3G technologies will still co-exist with the 4G for a certain period of time. Other applications such as wireless LAN (Local Area Network) and RFID are also widely used. As a result, there emerges a trend towards integrating multiple wireless functionalities into a single mobile device. Low noise amplifier (LNA), the most critical component of the receiver front-end, determines the sensitivity and noise figure of the receiver and is indispensable for the complete system. To satisfy the need for higher performance and diversity of wireless communication systems, three LNAs with different structures and techniques are proposed in the thesis based on the 4G applications. The first LNA is designed and optimized specifically for LTE applications, which could be easily added to the existing system to support different standards. In this cascode LNA, the nonlinearity coming from the common source (CS) and common gate (CG) stages are analyzed in detail, and a novel linear structure is proposed to enhance the linearity in a relatively wide bandwidth. The LNA has a bandwidth of 900MHz with the linearity of greater than 7.5dBm at the central frequency of 1.2GHz. Testing results show that the proposed structure effectively increases and maintains linearity of the LNA in a wide bandwidth. However, a broadband LNA that covers multiple frequency ranges appears more attractive due to system simplicity and low cost. The second design, a wideband LNA, is proposed to cover multiple wireless standards, such as LTE, RFID, GSM, and CDMA. A novel input-matching network is proposed to relax the tradeoff among noise figure and bandwidth. A high gain (>10dB) in a wide frequency range (1-3GHz) and a minimum NF of 2.5dB are achieved. The LNA consumes only 7mW on a 1.2V supply. The first and second LNAs are designed mainly for the LTE standard because it is the most widely used standard in the 4G communication systems. However, WiMAX, another 4G standard, is also being widely used in many applications. The third design targets on covering both the LTE and the WiMAX. An improved noise cancelling technique with gain enhancing structure is proposed in this design and the bandwidth is enlarged to 8GHz. In this frequency range, a maximum power gain of 14.5dB and a NF of 2.6-4.3dB are achieved. The core area of this LNA is 0.46x0.67mm2 and it consumes 17mW from a 1.2V supply. The three designs in the thesis work are proposed for the multi-standard applications based on the realization of the 4G technologies. The performance tradeoff among noise, linearity, and broadband impedance matching are explored and three new techniques are proposed for the tradeoff relaxation. The measurement results indicate the techniques effectively extend the bandwidth and suppress the increase of the NF and nonlinearity at high frequencies. The three proposed structures can be easily applied to the wideband and multi-standard LNA design.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
DepartmentElectrical and Computer Engineering
SupervisorChen, Li; Dinh, Anh
CommitteeEl-Sankary, Kamal; Ko, Seok-Bum; ElSankary, Kamal; Safa, Kasap; Michael, Bradley; David, Klymyshyn
Copyright DateDecember 2013
Low Noise Amplifier