Ahmed Adel Hassona, Microtechnology and Nanoscience - MC2

​Title: Enabling solutions for Integration and Interconnectivity in Millimeter-wave and Terahertz Systems

Ahmed is a PhD student at the Microwave Electronics Laboratory
Faculty opponent: Assoc. Professor Tom Johansen, Technical University of Denmark
Examiner: Prof. Herbert Zirath
Main supervisor: Researcher Vessen Vassilev
The defence will be held online: https://chalmers.zoom.us/j/61175114685
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Recently, Terahertz (THz) systems have witnessed increasing attention due to the continuous need for high data rate transmission which is mainly driven by next-generation telecommunication and imaging systems. In that regard, the THz range emerged as a potential domain suitable for realizing such systems by providing a wide bandwidth capable of achieving and meeting the market requirements. However, the realization of such systems faces many challenges, one of which is interconnectivity and high level of integration. Conventional packaging techniques would not be suitable from performance perspective above 100 GHz and new approaches need to be developed. This thesis proposes and demonstrates several approaches to implement interconnects that operate above 100 GHz. One of the most attractive techniques discussed in this work is to implement on-chip coupling structures and insert the monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) directly into a waveguide (WG). Such approach provides high level of integration and eliminates the need of galvanic contacts; however, it suffers from a major drawback which is the propagation of parasitic modes in the circuit cavity if the MMIC is large enough to allow such modes to propagate. To mitigate this problem, this work suggests and investigates the use of electromagnetic bandgap (EBG) structures that suppresses those modes such as bed of nails and mushroom-type EBG structures. The proposed techniques are used to implement several on-chip packaging solutions that have an insertion loss as low as 0.6 dB at D-band (110-170 GHz). Moreover, the solutions are demonstrated in several active systems using various commercial MMIC technologies. The thesis also investigates the possibility of utilizing the commercially available packaging technologies such as Embedded Wafer Level Ball Grid Array (eWLB) packaging. Such technology has been widely used for integrated circuits operating below 100 GHz but was not attempted in the THz range before. This work attempts to push the limits of the technology and proposes novel solutions based on coupling structures implemented in the technology’s redistribution layers. The proposed solutions achieve reasonable performance at D-band that are suitable for low-cost mass production while allowing heterogeneous integration with other technologies as well. This work addresses integration challenges facing systems operating in the THz range and proposes high-performance interconnectivity solutions demonstrated in a wide range of commercial technologies and hence enables such systems to reach their full potential and meet the increasing market demands.
Category Thesis defence
Location: The defence will be held online
Starts: 06 November, 2020, 10:00
Ends: 06 November, 2020, 13:00

Published: Wed 28 Oct 2020.