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27 October 2006


Cree's GaN HEMT WiMAX devices used for airborne broadcasting

The GaN HEMT WiMAX devices of Cree Inc of Durham, NC, USA are now being used in the new Powerlinear power amplifiers of electronics equipment maker Array Wireless Inc, which specializes in ultra-linear, ultra-efficient power
amplifiers for digital communications networks. Cree first demonstrated the GaN HEMTs at June's IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium 2006 and announced at the WiMAX World 2006 event in Boston, 10-12 October, that it was shipping samples.

Cree says that its GaN HEMTs help to deliver a solution that is 25% smaller and at least twice as energy efficient as competing systems. Smaller, lighter and more efficient power amplifiers are now being used in certain applications, such as airborne high-definition broadcasting, as a direct result.

Array's Powerlinear amplifiers are used in blimps and in aircraft that provide television broadcast feeds of Sunday Night Football on NBC. "With the new Cree GaN HEMT devices, our amplifiers use half the power of competing systems and are significantly smaller in size, both of which are critical benefits for wireless applications where space and weight are at a premium," says Ed Takacs, president of Array Wireless.

The Powerlinear series is designed to work with the rigorous requirements of digital modulation formats, such as coded orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (COFDM). They operate in a variety of bands from UHF to C and are optimized for the Nextel BAS (Broadcast Auxiliary Service) frequency relocation programs that are underway.

"Cree's new GaN HEMT devices reduce power consumption in a variety of wireless applications. They can also significantly reduce the size and complexity of amplifiers, providing greater benefits in targeted power amplifier applications," adds Jim Milligan, Cree's product manager for wireless products.

Other targeted communications applications for the Powerlinear power amplifiers include unmanned aerial vehicles, law enforcement, unmanned ground vehicles, WiMAX base-stations and secure mobile military communications.