Next-Generation CMOS RF Power Amplifiers

A. Hajimiri

Ten years ago, it was widely accepted conventional wisdom that watt level fully integrated power amplifiers (PAs) were not feasible in standard complimentary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) technology. Today, millions of such devices are commercially produced and shipped every month and are used in hundreds of millions of cellular phones across the world. Such dramatic transition from being considered an impossibility even by most optimistic academics to the obvious future direction to be followed by everyone happened through a series of demonstrations based on new architectures radically different from the known PA topologies applied over more than half a century.