RF Front-Ends for IEEE 802.11ac in Nanometer-Scale CMOS Technology

first_imgRFaxis, a company known for making CMOS Power Amplifiers announced that it will be unveiling a family of Nano RF products code named “Nucleus”. The initial device, Nucleus45, is a fully integrated 5GHz 802.11ac RF Front-end IC (RFeIC) built on a 40nm CMOS process, and is slated for sampling to strategic customers in Q4, 2014. The Nucleus45 is designed to deliver 18 dBm of output power to meet the most stringent linearity requirement for 256 QAM modulation for 802.11ac – without the use of any DPD (digital pre-distortion) techniques. The Nucleus4, a dual-band / dual-mode RFeIC in the same 40nm node will be available in Q1, 2015. RFaxis will also introduce its next-generation Nucleus2 series products to further push the envelope by integrating high-performance RF in nanometer process nodes, providing a seamless migration from 40nm to 28nm process node. Wi-Fi, which is driven by key applications such as smartphones, PCs/tablets, high-definition video streaming, and IoT continues will continue to maintain its explosive growth momentum over the next few years. According to Strategy analysis, the annual shipment for Wi-Fi chips will exceed to 5 billion units, compare to 2 billion in 2013. To further improve wireless speed and real-life data throughput, the Wi-Fi industry is rapidly adopting the latest IEEE standard, 802.11ac, that supports advanced modulation schemes such as 256 QAM, up to 8×8 MIMO (Multiple-In Multiple-Out) and MU-MIMO (Multi-User MIMO), in order to deliver unprecedented high data speed approaching 10 Gbps. The Nucleus solution provides the wireless industry a path forward to synchronize robust RF, digital and mixed-signal designs in deeper micron process nodes, enabling customers to achieve their RF performance targets with accelerated design cycle, greatly reduced development risk, shortened time-to-market, while avoiding massive new R&D investment.last_img read more