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Infineon introduces millimetre wave SiGe transceivers

The wireless single-chip ICs simplify the design of small cell backhaul links
Infineon Technologies AG has introduced a new transceiver family that simplifies system design and production logistics by replacing more than 10 discrete devices.

Due to their low power consumption the single-chip high-integration transceivers also help to reduce fixed expenses in high data rate millimetre wave wireless backhaul communication systems. The new transceivers address the market for wireless data links with data rates of more than 1 Gigabit per second (Gbps) between LTE/4G base stations and core networks.

Devices in the Infineon BGTx0 product family come in a standard plastic package and replace more than 10 discrete devices used in current system designs with one single chip. The customers’ assembly process is simplified dramatically as they can continue to use astandard SMT assembly flow.

The BGTx0 family provides a complete radio frequency (RF) front-end for wireless communication in 57-64 GHz, 71-76 GHz, or 81-86 GHz millimetre wave bands. Paired with a baseband/modem, the system solution requires less space, offers improved reliability and lower cost for the critical wireless backhaul links needed in mobile base stations that support LTE/4G networks.

“The V- and E-band microwave frequencies available for LTE/4G backhaul support data rates three times higher than in earlier generation networks. Correspondingly they need superior RF performance to meet operating requirements,” says Philipp von Schierstaedt, Vice President and General Manager of the Business Line RF & Protection Devices at Infineon Technologies.

“With this new transceiver family, Infineon leverages its process technology and RF design leadership to help system designers reduce complexity, simplify their production logistics, and ultimately improve quality and field reliability of their backhaul connectivity solutions.”

The BGTx0 transceivers integrate all of the RF building blocks – I/Q modulator, Voltage Controlled Oscillator (VCO), Power Amplifier (PA), Low Noise Amplifier (LNA), Programmable Gain Amplifier (PGA), SPI control interface and more – on a single chip in a compact, plastic eWLB package (embedded Wafer Level Ball Grid Array). Validation and calibration of RF performance occurs in production using Built-In-Self-Test (BIST), which contributes to the simplicity of integrating the chip into a device builder’s production flow.
The SiGe technology enables deliverable output power of up to 18 dBm of PA, a low noise figure of 6 dB of LNA and excellent VCO phase noise better than -85dBc/Hz at 100kHz offset allows a system designer to implement high modulation schemes up to QAM64 with a sample rate of 500 Msamples/sec and QAM32 with 1Gsamples/sec at a 10 -6 BER (Bit Error Rate).

ESD (Electrostatic Discharge) performance of more than 1KVolt increases the robustness and eases the system design for customers. The low power consumption of less than 2 W for this Backhaul transceiver family also allows network operators to reduce related fixed expenses.

Due to the direct conversion architecture of the transceiver, the interface between RF and baseband is simplified significantly compared to currently available discrete millimeter wave systems.

System suppliers also benefit from the quality and reliability of Infineon’s automotive qualified production flow for SiGe ICs.

Engineering samples of the BTGx0 family will be available in September 2013, with production ramp planned for late this year..
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