TriQuint and U.S. military team up on gallium nitride ICs

April 17, 2012 // By Sylvie Barak
TriQuint Semiconductor will work with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) to develop high-frequency and mixed signal integrated circuits (ICs) based on gallium nitride (GaN) technology.

The RF supplier signed a cooperative research and development agreement with ARL, giving military researchers access to TriQuint’s development, fabrication and packaging know-how, according to a statement. In return, ARL will provide designs and test circuits, said James L. Klein, TriQuint's vice president for defense products and foundry services.

TriQuint’s GaN process –in development since 1999-- has already been used by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for its Nitride Electronic NeXt-Generation (NEXT) program, as well as multiple other GaN process and manufacturing technology programs for the US Air Force, Army and Naval laboratories.

If successful, this latest research could help accelerate programs in communications, radar and even electronic warfare.

TriQuint said it hoped the agreement would stimulate high performance monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) development and advance state-of-the-art design programs.

Circuits created as part of the initiative will be based on TriQuint’s new E/D (enhancement-depletion mode) GaN technology.