A Novel 32-Gb/s 5.6-Vpp Digital-to-Analog Converter in 100 nm GaN Technology for 5G Signal Generation

The RF-power DAC presented here provides RF-signals in the gigabit regime with voltage swings up to 8.32 V, suitable to drive subsequent single-stage microwave GaN power amplifer for sub-six frequencies. A current-steering architecture is driven by a custom algorithm to provide a programmable high output current, up to 250 mA, to a capacitive load such as the capacitive input impedance of an single-stage GaN power amplifier. This architecture provides data rates up to 32 Gb/s with an custom encoding, while the output voltage swing at the load capacitance is higher than 5 Vpp. Therefore, slew rates of up to 76 V/ns can be established.