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# 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

600

Base
current
1 A

Saturation

Active forward

400

2 A
3 A
4 A
5 A

200

-1.0

Cutoff

2.0

4.0

6.0

## Collector-emitter voltage (V)

BJT I-V output characteristics. Also shown is a load line for the load resistance
RL = 12.5 k and two operating points corresponding to the base currents of
1A and 5 A, respectively.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

SMALL SIGNAL EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS

Base
current
1 A

time

600

400

ib

2 A
3 A
4 A
5 A
-1.0

ic

200

time

## The common-emitter output characteristics of the same transistor with a

superimposed small signal variation of the base current
The amplitude of the base current variation is 1 A so that the base current
changes sinusoidally in time from 1 A to 3 A. A small variation of the
base current leads to a relatively large variation of the collector current
(from 100 A to 300 A with the operating point at 200 A) corresponding
to a current gain of 100. In other words, the transistor operates as an
amplifier for an ac signal.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

SMALL SIGNAL EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS
The h-parameters are most frequently used for transistor
characterization [at least at relatively low frequencies (below 100 MHz
or so)] and are specified by transistor manufacturers in their data sheets.
i1

i2
h11

v1

h12v2

h21i1
h22

v2

v1 = h11i1 + h12 v 2
i2 = h21i1 + h22 v2

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

SMALL SIGNAL EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS
The small signal parameters may be determined from different shortcircuit or open-circuit measurements at the input and output ports:
i1

i2
h11

h12v2

v1

h21i1
h22

v2

h11 =

v1

v1
h12 = v
2 i1 = 0

i
h = v2
22
2 i =0

i1 v = 0
2

= 2
21
i v =0
1
2

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

SMALL SIGNAL EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS
i1

i2
h11

h12v2

v1

h21i1
h22

v2

h11 =

v1

v1
h12 = v
2 i1 = 0

i
h = v2
22
2 i =0

i1 v = 0
2

= 2
21
i v =0
1
2

The parameter h11 (hi) is called the short-circuit input impedance, h12 is called the
open-circuit reverse voltage ratio (hr), h21 is called the short-circuit forward current
ratio (hf), and h22 is called the open-circuit output admittance (ho).
hfe is equal to and hfb is equal to . For the other h-parameters, such
relationships are more complicated.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Physical EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS: -circuit
Cb'c
rbb'

Co llec t o r

b'

rbb'
b'

rb'c
Base

Base

rb'e

Co llec t o r

Cb'e

gmVb'e

rce

rb'e

gmVb'e

Em it t er

Em it t er
( a)

(b)

## (a) Full and (b) simplified low-frequency hybrid- equivalent circuits.

The transconductance, gm, is related to the dynamic (differential) resistance, re, of the
forward-biased emitter-base junction in the following way:
gm =

Ie
Ic
c
=
Vb'e re Vth
Vb' e

Vth = kT/q

The resistance rbb' is the base spreading resistance. The resistance rb'c and the capacitance
Cb'c in the hybrid- equivalent circuit represent the dynamic (differential) resistance and
the capacitance of the reverse-biased collector-base junction.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Physical EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS

rbb'

Co llec t o r
b'

Base

rb'e

gmVb'e

Em it t er

ic gm vb'e
v b' e ib rb'e
h fe
ic 1

rb'e

=
i b g m gm gm

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Physical EQUIVALENT CIRCUITS
Another useful equivalent circuit is a T-equivalent circuit

ie

Emitter

ie

Ce

ic

b'

Cc

re
ib

rbb'

Collector

rc
Base

The emitter capacitance, Ce, is approximately equal to the sum of the diffusion
capacitance of the emitter-base junction, Cedif, and the depletion capacitance, Ced.
The resistance rc in the T-equivalent circuit describes the Early effect.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

The relations between h-parameters and parameters of hybrid -equivalent
circuit.
Definition of h-parameters
Dynamic resistance of the
forward-biased emitter-base
junction
Transconductance

V
V
re = b' e th
Ie
Ie

Ie
Ic
c
=
Vb'e re Vth
Vb' e
h fe
ic 1

## Resistance in the hybrid-

=

rb'e
equivalent circuit
ib gm gm gm

h-parameter
hoe
hie
hfe

gm =

## Relation to parameters of hybrid -equivalent circuit

1/ (rb' c + rb' e ) + 1/ rce + gm rb'e / (rb' c + rb' e )
rbb' + rb' e rb' c / (rb' e + rb'c )
g mrb'e rb' c /(rb' c + rb'e )

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Small-signal operation of BJT
V cc

+
6
RL

R B2
Rs

C1

1
Vs

C2

2
R B1

RE

ZL
CE

## In a typical circuit, the transistor operating point is

chosen using biasing resistors (resistors RB1 and
RB2). The base dc voltage (with respect to the
ground) is equal to VccRB1/(RB1 + RB2) if the
common-emitter gain, , is large. The operating
point also depends on the emitter series resistance,
RE. The purpose of this resistance is to make the
operating point more stable with respect to
temperature variations.

Coupling capacitances (C1 and C2) are used to connect the transistor stage
to the rest of the circuit and to isolate the dc bias and ac signal. A bypass
capacitor, CE, shunts the resistance, RE, for the ac signal.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Small-signal operation of BJT
The limitations of BJT operating frequencies imposed by time delays related to RC
time constants of a BJT equivalent circuit.
Using the T-equivalent circuit for the common-base configuration:

ie

Emitter

ie

Ce

ic

b'

Cc

re
ib

rbb'

rc

Collector

## ie = vb'e (1 + jCe re ) / re = ieo (1+ jCe re )

where ieo is the ac current through
resistance re

Base

= /(1 + j / )

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Small-signal operation of BJT
The common-emitter configuration

r bb'
r b'e

Cb'c
V b'e

ic

Cb'e
gm V b'e

## where gb'e = 1/rb'e =hfe/re

As shown before,
h fe

ic 1
rb'e

=
ib g m g m g m

Since ic = gmvb'e,

gm
ic
=
= =
ib gb'e + j (Cb'e + C b' c ) 1 + j /

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Comparison of f and f

## = 2f = gb' e /(Cb'e + Cb' c )

f = gm / 2h fe (Cb'e + C b' c )

f f /h
fe

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

The cutoff frequency, fT, is defined as the frequency at which the
magnitude of the short-circuit common-emitter current gain equals unity,
that is, || = 1.
gm
2
fT = f 1 f h fe
2 (Cb'e + Cb'c )

## where = hfe is the low-frequency, short-circuit, common-emitter current gain.

Since usually Cbe >> Cb'c,
fT f.
At frequencies much larger than f but much smaller than fT,

/ ( j )

Since

(1 + j / )

f T f h fe f

This equation can be used for deducing fT from the measured values of at
high frequencies.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

For a more accurate calculation of fT we have to account for additional time
delays that are not represented by in the simple equivalent circuit.
One such delay is associated with the collector depletion layer transit time

cT

x dcb
v sn

where xdcb is the width of the collector-base depletion region and vsn is the
electron saturation velocity (for n-p-n transistors).
Another important delay is associated with the collector charging
time, c, related to the collector series resistance, rcs,

c = rcs Cb' c
Finally, a parasitic capacitance, Cp, should be added to the collector capacitance, Cb'c.

1
fT
2 eff

eff = e + c + cT

## Cb' e + Cb'c + C p Vth

Cb' e + Cb'c + C p

e =
Ic
gm

fT

1
2 eff

eff = e + c + cT

## Cb' e + Cb'c + C p Vth

Cb' e + Cb'c + C p

e =
Ic
gm

## In most transistors, e is an important or even the dominant

contribution to the total delay time.
This time can be reduced by increasing the collector current.

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

Maximum oscillation frequency
The frequency at which the power gain of the transistor is equal to unity
under optimum matching conditions for the input and output impedances
is called the maximum oscillation frequency, fmax.
Using a simplified -equivalent
circuit where we neglect rb'c and rce,

r bb'
r b'e

Cb'c
V b'e

Cb'e
gm V b'e

ic

fmax =

fT
8rbb' Cb'c

## 07 High Frequency Parameters of BJTs and HBTs

The summary of important equations related to BJT frequency response
= /(1 + j / )
= 2 f = 1/(C e r e )
Common-base
where
current gain
Common-emitter = / 1 + j /
where = 2f = gb' e /(Cb'e + Cb' c )
current gain
gm
gm
Cutoff frequency Crude estimate: f

T
2 (Ce + Cb'c ) 2Ce

## More accurate equation:

1
fT
where eff = e + c + cT ,
2eff

Maximum
oscillation
frequency, fmax

,
fT
fmax =
8rbb' Cb'c