High-Power Solid-State Amplifier

Period of Performance: 06/28/2013 - 12/28/2013


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Physical Optics Corp.
1845 West 205th Street Array
Torrance, CA 90501
Principal Investigator


To address the Navy need for a high peak- and average-power solid-state amplifier to replace existing Klystron tube amplifiers in surface Navy radar, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new amplifier by Spatially Combining in a Radial configuration many Amplifier Modules (SCRAM). It is based on spatial combining of an array of over 350 power amplifier modules of 1 kW output to produce 350 kW of peak RF power at 5% duty cycle. The amplifier uses the new generation of rugged 50 Volt laterally diffused metal oxide semiconductors, and can tolerate high voltage standing wave ratios. This will allow hot swapping of the individual amplifier and power supply units, a Navy requirement. This new amplifier will significantly increase the critical path mean time between failures compared to present Klystron-based amplifiers. The innovation in this solid-state amplifier and power supply will enable the Navy to replace the Klystron amplifier, which is exhibiting decreasing availability; this directly addresses the Navy s requirements. In Phase I, POC will demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed amplifier, by developing a scaled down prototype by combining power of four amplifier modules. In Phase II, POC will design the packaging and prepare a final prototype.