New SiGe technologies with cut off frequencies towards 600 GHz and their potential impact on future mmW sensing in automotive and industrial applications

Today’s SiGe BiCMOS technologies with fMAX values of 300 – 400 GHz and fTs of 200 – 300 GHz enable realization of highly integrated, high-performance automotive radar sensors in the 76 – 81 GHz range at low cost. They form the basis for a broad deployment of automotive safety features like autonomous emergency breaking, collision mitigation or lane change assistance even in low-priced cars and led to a strong push in the development activities of autonomously driving cars as well. Automotive radar being the first “mass market” for mmWave technologies and circuits has increased significantly the capital spent for R&D in mmWave technology. Other, new and emerging mmWave and THz applications will benefit tremendously from this development. The development of SiGe BiCMOS technologies with cut-off frequencies beyond 500 GHz has been started some time ago and is now close to qualification and production readiness. The use of higher operating frequencies and much smaller wavelengths will enable new, very compact “micro” sensors with integrated, high gain antennas offering much improved spatial, angular and Doppler (velocity) resolution for future autonomous cars, gesture and environmental sensing in general, personal health monitoring and THz imaging and spectroscopy. This talk will give an overview of the development status of Infineon’s next generation 600 GHz SiGe BiCMOS process, discuss the challenges encountered and how they are overcome.