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3 May 2018

RF power semiconductor market reached almost $1.5bn for 2017, driven by GaN

© Semiconductor Today Magazine / Juno PublishiPicture: Disco’s DAL7440 KABRA laser saw.

The market for RF power semiconductors (for <4GHz and >3W) reached almost $1.5bn in 2017, according to market analyst firm ABI Research. The wireless infrastructure segment was flat but other markets – notably military/defense – are moving forward. In particular, gallium nitride (GaN) – long seen as the likely promising new ‘material of choice’ for RF power semiconductors – is continuing its march to capture share, the firm adds.

“Gallium nitride has the promise of gaining market share in 2018 and is forecast to be a significant force over the next few years,” notes director Lance Wilson. “It bridges the gap between two older technologies, exhibiting the high-frequency performance of gallium arsenide combined with the power handling capabilities of silicon LDMOS,” he adds. “It is now a mainstream technology which has now achieved measurable market share and in future will capture a significant part of the market.”

Wireless infrastructure, while representing about two-thirds of total sales, has been anemic recently. Growth for other segments outside of wireless infrastructure is showing mid-single-digit compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the forecast period of 2018-2023.

The vertical market showing the strongest uptick in the RF power semiconductor business, outside of defense, is commercial avionics and air-traffic control, which Wilson describes as now being “a significant market”. While producers of these devices are in the major industrialized countries, this sub-segment market is now so global that end-equipment buyers can be anywhere, notes the report.

These findings are from ABI Research’s ‘RF Power Semiconductors Market Data’ report and the companion narrative and discussion ‘RF Power Semiconductors: Silicon, Gallium Nitride, and Gallium Arsenide High-Power RF Devices’. The reports are part of the firm’s 5G & Mobile Network Infrastructure research service.

Tags: ABI RF power semiconductors GaN

Visit: www.abiresearch.com/market-research/product/

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