Automated Methodology for Wideband RF Power Amplifier Design

Traditionally, the power amplifier design flow consists of pre-selecting load impedance profiles versus frequency at different back-off levels and then use optimization tools to synthetize matching networks to approximate those profiles. Unfortunately, since the optimum impedance profiles are normally non-foster and the error function is formulated in terms of the impedance error, not of the desired PA performance, either sub-optimal solutions are obtained — significantly affecting the PA’s efficiency and output power over the desired bandwidth —, or the intervention of a highly experienced PA designer is required. Therefore, new PA design methods are required to automate the design of the matching networks by directly targeting the desired metrics (eg efficiency, gain, output power) without the need to pre-select the optimum impedance profiles by a highly trained PA designer. This talk shows how multi-dimensional search algorithms can be used to automate the PA design flow by directly synthesizing the matching networks to achieve the desired output power, efficiency, and gain performance, without forcing any impedance profiles.