A novel output transformer based highly linear RF-DAC architecture

E. Bechthum, G.I. Radulov, J. Briaire, G. Geelen, A.H.M. Roermund, van

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
264 Downloads (Pure)


A major limitation of the linearity of Current Steering (CS) RF-DACs is the large output voltage swing (typically 1Vpp), which couples to sensitive internal nodes and thereby causes non-linear distortion. This paper proposes a novel approach for the linearization of the CS RF-DAC. An output transformer decouples the output from the circuit core and attenuates the voltage swing seen by the RF-DAC current cells. A lumped element model of a transformer is used in calculations and simulations to analyze the performance of the transformer in the Mixing-DAC application, and to select optimal design parameters for high linearity. Verification with a simulation model of an RF-DAC shows that the output related non-linearity (IMD3) of the CS RF-DAC improves with about 14dB when the proposed transformer parameters are used
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 21st European Conference on Circuit Theory and Design (ECCTD 2013), 8-12 September 2013, Dresden, Germany
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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