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16 April 2013

Infineon introduces SiGe transceiver family for millimeter-wave wireless backhaul

Germany’s Infineon Technologies AG has introduced a new silicon germanium (SiGe) based transceiver family to address the market for wireless data links with data rates of more than 1Gbps 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 BGTx0 family provides a complete radio frequency (RF) front-end for wireless communication in 57-64GHz, 71-76GHz or 81-86GHz millimeter-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, says the firm.

“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,” said Philipp von Schierstaedt, VP & general manager of the Business Line RF & Protection Devices at Infineon. “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 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.

In terms of RF performance, SiGe technology offers output power of up to 18dBm of PA, low noise figure of 6dB of LNA and VCO phase noise better than -85dBc/Hz at 100kHz offset. The technology allows system designers 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, says the firm.

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

Tags: Infineon SiGe Transceivers


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