Don Malocha


About the Presenter

Donald C. Malocha is currently the CTO of Pegasense LLC, specializing in solid-state acoustic devices, wireless RF communications systems, and sensors. He is also Pegasus-Professor Emeritus in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Dept., University of Central Florida (UCF), Orlando. Don received a dual BS in electrical engineering (EE) and computer science (CS), an MS in EE, and Ph.D. degree in EE from the University of Illinois, Urbana. He was member of the technical staff (MTS) at Texas Instruments Corporate Research Laboratory, Mgr. of Advanced Product Development, Sawtek, and an MTS at Motorola. He has been a Visiting Scholar at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich (ETH), Switzerland, and the University of Linz, Austria. He is an Associate Editor of the IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ULTRASONICS, FERROELECTRICS AND FREQUENCY CONTROL (UFFC), a UFFC AdCom Emeritus-member, and past-President of the IEEE UFFC Society. He is chair of IEC TC49 for piezoelectric dielectric and electrostatic devices and materials for frequency control standards. He has served on the Technical Program Committees of the IEEE International Ultrasonics Symposium, International Frequency Control Symposium, the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Symposium, Sensors, and European Frequency and Time Forum. He is the 2004 UCF Distinguished Researcher and received the 2013 UCF Dean’s Research Professorship Award, the IEEE UFFC 2008 Distinguished Service Award, the 2005 J. Staudte Memorial Award, the 2000 IEEE Third Millennium Medal, and the 1998 Electronic Industries Association’s David P. Larsen Award. He has over 300 technical publications and 15 patents. Don is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

About the Presentation

"Acoustoelectric Amplifier Modeling, Analysis, and Device Performance"

This tutorial will present recent efforts and results for surface acoustic wave (SAW) acoustoelectric amplification (AEA), which include modelling, analysis, experimental results and predictions. The topic of the acoustoelectric effect has been studied since the 1960s with a goal of producing a simple monolithic, continuous wave (CW), low power, low noise AEA. Although the conceptualization is understood, the practical implementation has been elusive. As material and fabrication technology has advanced, recent efforts have demonstrated embodiments and paths that may  achieve a practical AEA, having net gain, terminal gain, and CW operation. The tutorial will begin with a brief review of the wave propagation model as a foundation of past efforts of acoustoelectric theory and published experimental results into the 1980s. Next, a novel theoretical and modeling approach for a SAW AEA applicable to thin film overlay resistive or semiconductor material that is within or outside the acoustic path is developed. The theory is developed for a direct coupled SAW and thin film resistive interaction layer. The analysis uses the combination of coupling of modes and charge control analysis to develop a complete model describing the small signal operation and the large signal saturation effect. The model is developed for the case of direct coupling of thin films in the propagation path or coupling electrodes either inside or outside the propagation path. The approach describes the phenomenological physics and amplifier’s key parameters. Predictions are compared to published experimental results on lithium niobate using a monolayer graphene film and bonded film overlays that yielded continuous-wave operation and a net terminal gain. Experimental results that demonstrate the SAW amplification and attenuation properties will be discussed for communication and sensor applications.

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