High Power High Frequency Transistors: A Material’s Perspective

  • Robert L. CoffieEmail author


Johnson’s figure of merit (which is proportional to the breakdown field times saturation velocity) is often used to predict the potential power/frequency performance of a material system. Care must be taken when predicting performance based only on Johnson’s figure of merit as many parameters not considered by it can significantly impact performance. This chapter takes a closer look at key material parameters that should be considered when predicting performance solely on material properties. Along with Johnson’s figure of merit, the additional considerations of doping, low field mobility, thermal constraints, and heterojunctions are discussed. The analysis is used to explain why gallium nitride-based high electron mobility transistors have become the material system of choice for high power high frequency applications. The chapter concludes with the requirements for next generation material systems to displace gallium nitride as the preferred semiconductor for high power high frequency applications.


Saturation velocity Mobility Johnson’s figure of merit (JFoM) Short-circuit-current-gain Critical electric field High electron mobility transistor (HEMT) Output Power figure of merit Loadline Class A Knee voltage Transconductance Maximum current Breakdown voltage Output power Power gain y-Parameters Filling factor Ionization energy z-Parameters Dissipated power Channel temperature Power added efficiency (PAE) Thermal conductivity Short channel effects 



This work was funded by ONR grant N00014-18-1-2709, monitored by Dr. Paul Maki.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.RLC SolutionsPlanoUSA

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