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Microchip’s New 2.4 GHz RF High-Power Amplifier Supports 256-QAM Modulation; Extends Range Of Ultra-High Data Rate WLAN Systems

Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: MCHP), a leading provider of microcontroller, mixed-signal, analog and Flash-IP solutions, today announced its latest 2.4 GHz RF high-power amplifier—the SST12CP12—which adds support for the 256-QAM ultra-high data rate modulation. With its high linear output power of up to 23 dBm at a dynamic EVM as low as 1.8% and MCS8 40 MHz bandwidth modulation, along with 25 dBm linear power at 3% EVM, this amplifier significantly extends the range of IEEE 802.11b/g/n WLAN systems while providing excellent power at the maximum 256-QAM data rate. It is also spectrum mask compliant up to 28.5 dBm for 802.11b/g communication, and utilizes Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing (OFDM) to correct severe channel conditions without the need for complex equalization filters. Additionally, the SST12CP12 reduces board space with its small 3x3x0.55 mm, 16-pin QFN package.

Achieving the maximum data rate and longest range, while saving board space, is essential to Wi-Fi ® access-point, router and set-top-box designers. However, they also need to reduce power consumption, integrate input-matching functionality and maintain temperature stability while ensuring transmission power control. The SST12CP12 power amplifier has a low operating current of 380 mA at 23 dBm, which enables more transmission channels and a higher data rate for each system. This amplifier also features 50 ohm on-chip input match and simple output match, which is easy to use and speeds time to market. Additionally, the integrated linear power detector provides temperature stability and immunity to VSWR radio-wave reflection, for accurate output power control that ensures all of the power reaches its destination.

“Microchip’s RF power amplifiers have a strong position in the WLAN market, due to their reliability combined with high-power efficiencies that can only be achieved using InGaP/GaAs HBT,” said Daniel Chow, vice president of Microchip’s RF Division. “With the release of the SST12CP12, we’re providing the same reliable operation over temperature at extra-low EVM. In conjunction with its high-efficiency operation, this new power amplifier extends the range of an ultra-high data rate 256-QAM system.”

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