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An X-Band low-power and low-phase-noise VCO using bondwire inductor

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Abstract:

In this paper a low-power low-phase-noise voltage-controlled-oscillator (VCO) has been designed and, fabricated in 0.25 μm SiGe BiCMOS process. The resonator of the VCO is implemented with on-chip MIM capacitors and a single aluminum bondwire. A tail current filter is realized to suppress flicker noise up-conversion. The measured phase noise is 126.6 dBc/Hz at 1 MHz offset from a 7.8 GHz carrier. The figure of merit (FOM) of the VCO is 192.5 dBc/Hz and the VCO core consumes 4 mA from a 3.3 V power supply. To the best of our knowledge, this is the best FOM and the lowest phase noise for bondwire VCOs in the X-band. This VCO will be used for satellite communications.

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