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Wolfspeed GaN: Rugged Enough For Tracking Space Junk, Rugged Enough For 5G

Are GaN RF devices rugged and reliable enough to tackle the harshest environments the telecom market can hand out, especially as it relates to 5G small cells?

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GaN RF devices are used throughout the world on projects in a broad range of applications such as surveillance and weather radar, first responder communications, and improvised explosive device (IED) protection systems, where downtime is not an option. But are they rugged and reliable enough to tackle the harshest environments the telecom market can hand out, especially as it relates to 5G small cells?

As 5G deployments gather momentum, small cell antennas and base stations will need to be deployed in a wide variety of locations—street lights, utility poles, sides of buildings—while delivering ultra-high reliability to support applications for which always-on connectivity is required. Every piece needs to be rugged in form factor to withstand harsh environmental conditions such as high heat, high humidity, dust and other factors. However, the semiconductor materials used also need to be able to withstand fluctuations in power and temperature with minimal degradation of performance or issues that might require costly maintenance on the base station equipment.

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