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Significant Improvements in Phase Shifter Loss and Power Handling May 06, 2015

Durham, NC, May 6, 2015: Nuvotronics has demonstrated a high efficiency gallium nitride (GaN) HEMT digital phase shifter; greatly exceeding previously-reported Loss Figure of Merit results[1] while significantly increasing solid-state MMIC phase shifter power handling. This effort was funded under Navy SBIR N141-034 (Phase I).

This new capability will have far reaching benefits in radar and communication systems such as phased arrays which perform electronic beam forming, steering, and scanning using phase shifters. Nuvotronics’ phase shifter technology uses a production-qualified GaN process.

“From the start, our company has been on the forefront of creating new phased array architectures,” said Steve Huettner, Chief Engineer at Nuvotronics and architect of the new phase shifter design. “We plan to leverage these successful phase shifter designs in our roadmap—continuing to provide the most scalable, lightest weight, and best performing components and modules for the next generation of phased arrays. We are pleased that we have been asked to submit a proposal for a Phase II program on the phase shifter topic. These new phase shifters will enable new capabilities for the U.S. Navy through strategic partnerships with prime contractors, in addition to benefiting other U.S. Defense agencies.”

Nuvotronics designs and manufactures industry-leading innovative RF architectures for defense, aerospace, and commercial markets. The company’s PolyStrata® additive manufacturing platform was originally developed under its first DARPA-funded program to meet the needs of future cost-effective phased array systems. The company is a small business with offices in NC, VA, and MA.


[1] Hettak et al, “A New Type of GaN HEMT Based High Power High-Pass/Low-Pass Phase Shifter at X Band”, Microwave Symposium Digest (MTT), 2012 IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium.