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● Class AB amplifier Operation

● Multisim Simulations - Operation

● Class AB amplifier biasing

● Multisim Simulations - Biasing

1

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Class AB Operation

2

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Bias QN and QP into slight conduction

when vI = 0.

Ideally QN and QP are:

i L =i N −i P 1. Matched (unlikely with discrete

transistors and challenging in IC).

2. Operate at same ambient

temperature.

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

3

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Output voltage:

for vi = 0

V BB

V BB for v i 0 v o=v i −v BEN ⇒ v o≈v i

v BEN = −v O 2

2

V BB V BB

v EBP =v O

2 for v i 0 v o=v i − v EBP ⇒ v o ≈v i

2

Base-to base voltage is constant!

v BEN v EBP =V BB

i N =i P i L There is a corresponding conservation

relation between iN & iP , i.e.

Bias (QN & QP matched): v BEN

vT

v EBP V BB

V BB VT 2V T

2VT Using: i N =I S e , i P =I S e & I Q =I S e

I N =I P =I Q = I S e

Also: i N =I S e

v BEN

vT

& i P =I S e

v EBP

VT V T ln

iN

IS

V T ln

iP

IS

=2 V T ln

IQ

IS

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

4

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

from the previous slide

i N =i P i L

V T ln

iN

IS

V T ln

iP

IS

=2 V T ln

IQ

IS

V T ln

iN iP

I 2S

=2V T ln

IQ

IS

2

ln i N i P =ln I 2Q or i N i P =I Q

Constant base voltage condition: v BEN v EBP =V BB => i N i P =I Q2

5

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Constant base voltage condition:

i N i P =I Q2

i N =i P i L ⇒i P =i N −i L

Combining equations:

vO i N i N −i L =I Q2 or i P i P i L =I 2Q

i L= for vI > 0 V for vI < 0 V

RL

Hence:

2 2

i 2N −i N i L −I Q2 =0 or i P i P i L −I Q =0

for vI > 0 V for vI < 0 V

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

6

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

i L =i N −i P i N i P = I Q2

Observations:

2

1. Since with constant base voltage VBB: i N i P =I Q , if iP increases by

i P =i P 1 i then iN decreases by i N =i N /1i , and vice-versa.

followers QN and QP. As vO increases, iP decreases and for large, positive

vO i.e. i =i −i =i − v O

P N L N hence v O V CC −V CENsat ⇒i P 0

RL

3. For vO < 0, the load current iL supplied by the complementary emitter

followers QN and QP. As vO decreases, iN decreases and for large, negative

vO i.e. vO

i N =i P i L =i P hence −vO −V CC V ECPsat ⇒i N 0

RL

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

7

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

The constant base voltage condition i P i N =I Q2 where IQ is typically small.

I Q2 1⋅10−6 1

i P= = −3

=0.1 mA= iN

i N 10⋅10 100

The Class AB circuit, over most of its input signal range, operates as if either

the QN or QP transistor is conducting and the QP or QN transistor is cut off.

decreased, the conduction of QN or QP dominates, respectively.

Using this approximation we see that a class AB amplifier acts much like a

class B amplifier; but without the dead zone.

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

8

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

voltage sources to be

matched and VBB/2 = 0.7 V.

9

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Amplitude: 20 Vp

Frequency: 1 kHz Class AB VTC Simulation

VCC

VBB/2

RSig VBB/2

RL

-VCC

10

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Amplitude: 2 Vp

Frequency: 1 kHz

V BB

=0.1V

2

V BB

=0.5V

2

V BB

=0.7V

2

11

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Instantaneous resistance for the

v BEN

QN transistor - assume α 1:

ac ground i N =I S e

vT

CN v BEN

VT

BN di N ISe iN

= =

EN

<=> in dv BEN VT VT

EP ip

For the QP transistor:

vI BP vI di P iP

=

dv EBP V T

CP

ac ground

Hence:

VT VT

r eN = and r eP =

iN iP

for vI > 0 V: R out ≈r eN

R out =r eN ∥r eP

for vI < 0 V: R out ≈r eP

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

12

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

The two emitter resistors are in parallel:

V T2

iN iP VT VT vO

R out =r eN ∣∣r eP = = = and i L = =i N −i P

VT VT

iN

iP

iN iP

1 1

iN iP i N i P

RL

VT

R out =

2 IQ

So, for small signals, a small load current IQ flows => no dead-zone!

13

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

A straightforward biasing approach:

IQ

IQ D1 and D2 are diode-connected

D1

transistors identical to QN and QP,

+ QN respectively.

VBB

They form mirrors with the quiescent

currents IQ set by matched R's:

D2

- QP 2V CC −1.4 V CC −0.7

I Q= =

IQ IQ 2R R

or:

V CC −0.7

R=

IQ

Recall: With mirrors, the ambient temperature for all transistors needs to

be matched!

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

14

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

IN = bias current for Class AB amplifier NPN

IREF

R

IQ IQ = IN

V BE1=V T ln

I REF

IS

Q2 = QN

VCC

+ +

IQ

- VBE1 VBE2- V BE2=V T ln

emitter IS

IO Re

degeneration I REF I S I REF

V BE1−V BE2 =V T ln =V T ln

IS IQ IQ

V CC −V BE1 12V −0.7 V

I REF = = =1 mA V BE1=V BE2I Q R e

R 11.3k

Note: Pages 653-656 in Sedra & Smith Text. I O R e =V T ln

I REF

IQ

Note Re > 0 iff IQ < IREF

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

15

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

If IQ specified (and IREF chosen by

R

IREF

IQ designer):

Re=

VT

IQ

ln

I REF

IQ

VCC

Example Let IQ = 10 µA & choose IREF = 10 mA,

IQ Re determine R and Re:

V CC −V BE1 12 V −0.7 V

R= = =1.13 k

I Q R e =V T ln

I REF I REF 10 mA

IQ VT I REF 0.025V 10 m A

Re = ln = ln

If Re specified and IREF given: IQ IQ 10 A 10 A

VT

I Q=

Re

ln I REF −ln I Q .=2500 ln 1000=17.27 k

Solve for IQ graphically. R=1.13 k R e =17.27 k

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

16

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

.≈.

Rout

v x −−v r ≫1/ g m

i x =g m v i ro=g m v

ro

v =−r ∥Re i x Rout is greatly enhanced by

v x r ∥R e i x adding emitter degeneration.

i x =−g m r ∥R e i x − vx

ro ro ⇒ R out = = R e∥r 1g m r o

vx ix

.≈−g m r ∥R e i x

ro g m r o ≫1

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

17

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Bias currents set at IREF and IQ by R and emitter resistor(s) Re.

I REF ≈4 mA NPN Widlar current mirror

I Q= I QN = I QP ≈2 mA

IREF IQN

R=2.8 kΩ

Q2

Q1

Re=10 Ω R =100 Ω i L =i N −i P

iN L

V CC −V BE1 V CC −V EB3

Amplitude: 0 Vp

Q3 iIiLLL R= = ≈2.8 k

Re=10 Ω I REF I REF

Frequency: 1 kHz Q4

R=2.8 kΩ

IREF IQP

Re=

VT

I QN

ln

I REF

I QN

≈ 10

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

18

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Class AB IREF = 4 mA Current Bias Simulation

NPN Widlar current mirror

Amplitude: 0 Vp

4.031m

Frequency: 1 kHz

2.329m

Quiescent Power

Dissipation vI = 0 V:

P Disp=P D−av =76.31 mW 75.53 mW

.=151.84 mW 2.270m

4.025m

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

19

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Amplitude: 12 Vp

Frequency: 1 kHz

VTC has no dead-zone.

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

20

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Linear VTC for vI-max ≤ vI ≥ 0 =>

1. Q1, Q2 forward-active

IQ

iREF Q2 ≠ Saturation =>

v CE2=V CC −i N Re −v O ≥ V CE2sat

Q2

where v O =−i N Re v I

Q1 v CE2=V CC −v I ≥ V CE2sat

vO

vI v I ≤ V CC −V CE2sat =v I −max1

Q3 iP

Q4 2. Q1 ≠ Cutoff =>

v BQ1 ≥ v I 0.7 V

v BQ1=V CC −i REF R

v I ≤ V CC −i REF R−0.7 V =v I −max2

v O =−i N Re V EB1V BE2v I v I −max =max v I −max1 , v I −max2

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

21

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

PD+av IQN IQP V BQ1

V BQ3

3.324m

0.018m

I REFN 309 mW

I QN

Q2 PD+av 9 9.7V

V BQ1 PL-av

Q1 NOTE:

VI 2.697m

VO 1. Linear operation up to VI = 9 V:

Q3

PDav = 946mW, PLav = 510mW =>

Q4 PLav P Lav 510 mW

= = =0.540.785

P Dav 946 mW

PD-av

2. At VI = 10 V: VBEQ3 = VBQ3 – VI = -0.1V

I QP

1.776u NPN Q1 is cutoff for VI ≥ 9.5 V.

4.734m 3. By symmetry PNP Q3 is cutoff

PD-av

for VI ≤ -9.5V .

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

22

ESE319 Introduction to Microelectronics

Conclusions

ADVANTAGE:

Class AB operation improves on Class B linearity.

DISADVANTAGES:

1. Emitter resistors absorb output power.

2. Power Conversion Efficiency is less than Class B.

3. Temperature matching will be needed – more so.

if emitter resistors are not used.

TRADEOFFS:

Tradeoffs - involving bias current - between power

efficiency, power dissipation and output signal swing

need to be addressed.

2008 Kenneth R. Laker, updated 30Nov09 KRL

23

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