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Cree Announces First Commercially Available GaN RF MMIC Products and Multi-Project MMIC Foundry Services

Jun 12, 2008
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DURHAM, N.C. -- Cree, Inc. (Nasdaq: CREE) announces the introduction of the world’s first commercially available GaN monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) amplifiers. These two “catalog” MMICs integrate Cree’s proven GaN RF transistor technology with a variety of other circuit elements to form fully integrated amplifier circuits. This allows for a dramatic reduction in size and increase in performance over hybrid amplifiers. Many RF integrated circuits can now be identically replicated on a single silicon carbide (SiC) substrate in a production process similar to that used for commercial microprocessors. The new broadband power amplifier MMICs, the CMPA0060005 and CMPA2560025, are now available for sample release in packaged and die formats.

The CMPA0060005 is a wideband 5-watt distributed amplifier operating from DC to 6 GHz. The CMPA2560025 is a higher-power, 25-watt reactively matched amplifier operating from 2.5 to 6 GHz. Both MMICs are suitable for a variety of applications where high power over broad bandwidths is required. As an example, a pair of CMPA2560025s driven by a CMPA0060005 can provide over 40 dB gain with an output power up to 50 watts in the 2.5 to 6-GHz band.

Cree also announces the expansion of its standard full-wafer (SFW) MMIC Foundry service to include shared multi-project (SMP) “pizza mask” foundry runs on a quarterly basis. This SMP service is available for both SiC MESFET and GaN HEMT MMIC processes.

“The introduction of the industry’s first off-the-shelf ‘catalog’ GaN MMICs continues to set Cree apart as the industry’s leader in wide bandgap MMIC technology,” said Jim Milligan, Cree director of RF and microwave products. “These products can provide our customers with the performance improvement and size-reduction benefits of microwave circuit integration in convenient ‘drop-in’ 50-ohm amplifiers. Further, our new SMP foundry service will be ideal for lower-cost prototyping of SiC or GaN MMICs by allowing customers to purchase a portion of a shared multi-project wafer.”

“This MMIC milestone is the culmination of many years of internal investment and external support from the U.S. Department of Defense, the Title III Office, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). We are extremely pleased to see the results of these efforts beginning to pay off for both the military and commercial markets,” said John Palmour, Ph.D., executive vice president for advanced devices at Cree.

Features of the GaN RF MMICs include:

CMPA0060005 GaN MMIC
* Wideband distributed amplifier covering DC – 6 GHz
* Up to 5 watts of CW RF output power
* High wideband DC to RF efficiency (typically 25%)
* 28 to 48-volt operating voltage range

CMPA2560025 GaN MMIC
* Broadband reactively matched amplifier covering 2.5 – 6 GHz
* Up to 25 watts CW RF output power
* Outstanding broadband DC to RF efficiency (typically 30-45%)
* 28-volt operating voltage

Both of these new GaN MMIC products will be demonstrated at the Cree booth, #1243, at the 2008 IEEE/MTT-S International Microwave Symposium in Atlanta, GA, June 15-20, 2008. For additional information regarding Cree’s new SMP foundry service or other Cree products and services, please call (919) 287-7816 or visit the Cree website at

About Cree, Inc.
Cree is leading the LED lighting revolution and setting the stage to obsolete the incandescent light bulb through the use of energy-efficient, environmentally friendly LED lighting. Cree is a market-leading innovator of lighting-class LEDs, LED lighting retrofit solutions, and semiconductor solutions for backlighting, wireless and power applications.

Cree’s product families include recessed LED down lights, blue and green LED chips, high-brightness LEDs, lighting-class power LEDs, power-switching devices and radio-frequency/wireless devices. Cree solutions are driving improvements in applications such as general illumination, backlighting, electronic signs and signals, variable-speed motors, and wireless communications.

For additional product and company information, please refer to

This press release contains forward-looking statements involving risks and uncertainties, both known and unknown, that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated. Actual results may differ materially due to a number of factors, such as the risk we may encounter delays or other difficulties in ramping up production of our new sample products which are currently available for evaluation and testing purposes only; the risk we may be unable to develop and release commercial products with performance ratings comparable to the development results described above; the risk we may be unable to manufacture products with sufficiently low cost to offer them at competitive prices or with acceptable margins, the rapid development of new technology and competing products that may impair demand or render our products obsolete; the potential lack of customer acceptance for our products and services; variations in demand for Cree’s products and its customers' products; and other factors discussed in Cree’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its report on Form 10-K for the year ended June 24, 2007, and subsequent filings.

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