A 20-W wideband voltage controlled attenuator for millimeter-wave applications

Yuan Wang, Heng Tung Hsu, Yi Fan Tsao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper, we present a distributed voltage controlled attenuator (VCA) featuring an extremely high power handling capability of 20 W. Theoretical analyses have been performed to simultaneously achieve a wideband, low insertion loss, and high attenuation dynamic range performance. Implemented in a commercial 0.25-μm GaN-on-SiC high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) technology, a 1- to 25-GHz VCA was measured to perform a dynamic range of 24 dB, an average insertion loss of 3.4 dB, and an average input 1-dB compressed power (P1dB) of 43 dBm across the frequencies of interest. To the best of the authors' knowledge, this paper presents the monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) VCA with the reported highest power handling capability in such compact chip area, while maintaining a nice operating bandwidth and dynamic range.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2065-2078
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Circuit Theory and Applications
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2023


  • distributed
  • gallium nitride (GaN)
  • power handling capability
  • voltage-controlled attenuator
  • wideband


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