Emerging Technologies - Microwave Engineering …Emerging Technologies: IoT devices could be powered...

The European journal for the microwave and wireless design engineer european business press OCTOBER 2019 RF - Microwave www.mwee.com MW Emerging Technologies

Transcript of Emerging Technologies - Microwave Engineering …Emerging Technologies: IoT devices could be powered...

Page 1: Emerging Technologies - Microwave Engineering …Emerging Technologies: IoT devices could be powered by Neutrino energy devices RF - Microwave MW 8 News Atomic receiver works with

The European journal for the microwave and wireless design engineer

europeanbusiness press


RF - Microwave www.mwee.comMW

Emerging Technologies

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10, 12Emerging Technologies: Smart Networks Put the IoT on the Map

Multiprotocol Connectivity Addresses the Challenges of Managing and Updating IoT Devices on sub-GHz Networks

18, 20Emerging Technologies: Solving the Tough Timing Challenges of 5G Wireless Infrastructure

Emerging Technologies: IoT devices could be powered by Neutrino energy devices

RF - Microwave



Atomic receiver works with common communications signals


Fiber-like Internet coming to the Arctic

Satellite swarm to enable ubiquitous 5G

14Emerging Technologies: Integrated Transceivers Enable Small Form Factor Phased-Array Radar Platforms

Tiny energy-harvesting tile for IoT sensors outputs over 1-mW


Wi-Fi 6 router reference design

Pocket-sized USB spectrum analyzers

Editor In ChiefJean-Pierre JoostingTel. +44-7800 [email protected]

Advertising ProductionLydia GijsegomTel +32 (0) 2 740 00 [email protected]

Circulation & FinanceLuc DesimpelTel +32 (0) 2 740 [email protected]

Art ManagerJean-Paul SpeliersTel +32 (0)2 740 [email protected]

AccountingRicardo Pinto FerreiraTel +32 (0)2 740 [email protected]

PublisherAndre RousselotTel +32 (0)2 740 [email protected]

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Largest Selection p Same-Day Shipping p Expert Technical Support p

You Engineer the Future. We’ll Supply the Components... Today!

Armed with the world’s largest selection of in-stock, ready to ship RF components, and the brains to back them up, Pasternack Applications Engineers stand ready to troubleshoot your technical issues and think creatively to deliver solutions for all your RF project needs. Whether you’ve hit a design snag, you’re looking for a hard to find part or simply need it by tomorrow, our Applications Engineers are at your service.


USA (949) 261-1920 AUSTRIA (49) 89 4161 5994 0 BELGIUM (31) 229 50 34 78 CZECH REPUBLIC (420) 235 365 207 DENMARK (46) 8 554 909 50 FINLAND (46) 8 554 909 50 FRANCE (33) 1 47 95 99 60

GERMANY (49) 89 4161 5994 0 IRELAND (44) 0 1420 544789 ISRAEL (972) 9 741 7277 ITALY (39) 06 4071603 KAZAKHSTAN (7) 495 961 34 43 LUXEMBOURG (31) 229 50 34 78 NETHERLANDS (31) 229 50 34 78

NORWAY (46) 8 554 909 50 POLAND (48) 22 855 34 32 PORTUGAL (34) 91 636 3939 RUSSIA (7) 495 961 34 43 SLOVAKIA (420) 235 365 207 SPAIN (34) 91 636 3939 SWEDEN (46) 8 554 909 50

SWITZERLAND (49) 89 4161 5994 0 TURKEY (90) 216 504 07 87 UKRAINE (7) 495 961 34 43 UNITED KINGDOM (44) 0 1420 544789

Iridium and OneWeb MOU on combined satellite servicesIridium Communications and OneWeb have entered into a Memorandum of Un-derstanding (MoU) to work together toward a com-bined LEO satellite service operating in the Ku-band and L-band. This combined satellite service offering would be designed to make it easier for their mutual partners to offer unique bundling and co-marketing opportunities for the Iridium Certus® L-band services and OneWeb's Ku-band service. This is the first time that LEO operators have collaborated to deli-ver services in L-band and Ku-band and would leverage the strengths of their res-pective low-Earth-orbit (LEO) networks.

The MoU also creates opportunities for companies that manufacture both OneWeb and Iridium CertusTM termi-nals. Such new options could include Iridium-OneWeb companion packages in addition to providers being able to offer combined equipment or even new dual-constellation terminals.

Due to the physics associated with L-band and Ku-band spectrum, the

two come with diffe-rent yet complementary attributes. The OneWeb network will deliver very high-speed broadband connectivity that transfers large amounts of data. It is ideal for applications

including Inflight WiFi, Government, and Maritime networks that require global reach, high speed and low latency. Iri-dium's crosslinked satellite constellation brings seamless truly global connectivity with highly weather resilient L-band user terminals, making it uniquely suited to provide safety services for ships, aircraft, vehicles and deployed personnel, with regulation-required capability. These two networks can work together to deliver capacity, resiliency, and fast connectivity to customers anywhere in the world.


SoC enables affordable mobile payment terminalsA single-chip controller developed by STMicroelectronics and mobile payment disruptor YouTransactor is set to make card payment terminals even more affor-dable and ubiquitous.

The single-chip controller is the first PCI secure System-on-Chip (SoC) for mobile payment terminals to be based on a general-purpose microcontroller for robust performance and low power at a cost-effective price. It was developed through a combination of YouTransac-tor’s market knowledge and intellectual property of security and point-of-sale pay-ment terminals and applications, and ST’s chip-design skills and intellectual property including cyber-protection and sophisti-cated display-graphics control,

The YTSECPCI SoC commercialized by YouTransactor with the support of ST has already been embedded and deployed in 50,000 payment terminals, with over 1 mil-lion units ordered for 2019-2020. To further aid development, a dedicated evaluation board and reference design is available.


First LTE-M VoLTE call on European network infrastructureSwiss company, u-blox has announced that, in conjunction with telecom opera-tor Swisscom, it has completed a Voice over LTE (VoLTE) call across a live LTE-M cellular low power wide area network (LPWAN). This is the first time such a call has ever been achieved in Europe. The call was made over Swisscom’s LTE-M network, using a u-blox LTE-M evaluation kit. It followed on from preliminary tests that had been conducted at Swisscom’s laboratories and live network, where an array of different voice-related alarm and emergency functions were all validated. The test configurations included calls from a mobile handset to a landline phone, a landline phone to a mobile, and mobile to mobile, as well as hand-over switching between multiple LTE-M base stations.

VoLTE enables voice communication on packet-switched 4G networks. Being able to deliver voice calls directly over LTE-M represents a major technological advance for the industry. Such LPWAN

networks are designed to prolong the battery life of IoT devices and provide better in-building coverage. It also means that circuit-switched 2G or 3G voice connections no longer have to be relied upon, and the necessary infrastructure can be significantly reduced. Conse-quently the costs that OEMs face, in terms of constituent hardware and implementation effort, can be dramatical-ly reduced. Furthermore, it ensures that OEMs have future proofed themselves against the planned shutdown by many operators of their legacy 2G services.

Building automation, connected health and automotive are among the sectors that can derive benefits from VoLTE utili-zing LTE-M. Some key use cases include mobile personal emergency response monitors, connected elevators, car crash reporting mechanisms, fire prevention, residential security, and so on.


5G commercial market takes offDeveloping much more quickly than the previous generation 4G LTE standard, the 5G market has seen a total 31 5G commercial service launches globally by the end of the second quarter of 2019, according to the latest 5G research report from IHS Markit | Technology.

The report finds that amid a burst of launches in the second quarter, the deployment of 5G commercial services has become widespread, with projects in 17 countries in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and North America. This level of deployment was achieved just 10 months after the first commercial 5G launches, which IHS Markit | Technology traces back to August 2018. In contrast, 4G took about three years to begin deploy-ment and four years to attain a large number of launches.

A major factor driving the acceleration in the pace of launches is the matu-rity and experience of today’s wireless operators.



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Largest Selection p Same-Day Shipping p Expert Technical Support p

You Engineer the Future. We’ll Supply the Components... Today!

Armed with the world’s largest selection of in-stock, ready to ship RF components, and the brains to back them up, Pasternack Applications Engineers stand ready to troubleshoot your technical issues and think creatively to deliver solutions for all your RF project needs. Whether you’ve hit a design snag, you’re looking for a hard to find part or simply need it by tomorrow, our Applications Engineers are at your service.


USA (949) 261-1920 AUSTRIA (49) 89 4161 5994 0 BELGIUM (31) 229 50 34 78 CZECH REPUBLIC (420) 235 365 207 DENMARK (46) 8 554 909 50 FINLAND (46) 8 554 909 50 FRANCE (33) 1 47 95 99 60

GERMANY (49) 89 4161 5994 0 IRELAND (44) 0 1420 544789 ISRAEL (972) 9 741 7277 ITALY (39) 06 4071603 KAZAKHSTAN (7) 495 961 34 43 LUXEMBOURG (31) 229 50 34 78 NETHERLANDS (31) 229 50 34 78

NORWAY (46) 8 554 909 50 POLAND (48) 22 855 34 32 PORTUGAL (34) 91 636 3939 RUSSIA (7) 495 961 34 43 SLOVAKIA (420) 235 365 207 SPAIN (34) 91 636 3939 SWEDEN (46) 8 554 909 50

SWITZERLAND (49) 89 4161 5994 0 TURKEY (90) 216 504 07 87 UKRAINE (7) 495 961 34 43 UNITED KINGDOM (44) 0 1420 544789

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Fiber-like Internet coming to the ArcticStarting in 2020, OneWeb aims to deliver a high-speed, low-latency internet service to the Arctic that will deliver 375 Gbps of capacity above the 60th parallel North. The internet service provides enough capacity to give fiber-like connectivity to hundreds of thousands of homes, planes, and boats, connecting millions across the Arctic.

The first to provide full coverage to the region, OneWeb’s fiber-like internet will enable under-served, and unconnec-ted communities in the artic to benefit from broadband connectivity. The ser-vice will help advance maritime, aviation, enterprise, government and scientific research needs.

The dense, flexible coverage of OneWeb's polar-orbiting satellites coupled with its high-speed service and low latency capabilities will provide a superior connectivity experience to the 48% of the Arctic currently without

broadband coverage. OneWeb recently proved its system's capabilities through

HD video streaming tests last month with its first six satellites that showcased extreme low latencies un-der 40 milliseconds and high speed services.

The Arctic service will be deployed significantly

earlier and provide 200 times more capa-city than planned systems. Substantial services will start towards the end of 2020, with full 24-hour coverage being provided by early 2021, supplying unpre-cedented blanket coverage to every part of the Arctic Circle. OneWeb is already active in Norway and Alaska, where its ground antennas will be fully operatio-nal by January 2020. One of OneWeb's first operational satellites in orbit is also named Nanuq-Sat after the Inuktitut word for polar bear and was named by children in Anchorage, Alaska.


Huawei offers to license 5G technologyRen Zhengfei, CEO of Huawei Technolo-gies Co. Ltd., has offered to let Western companies license 5G technology al-lowing them to take software and modify it, according to reports. The move would appear to be an attempt to foster US infrastructure companies and let Huawei take some income from 5G markets where it is currently banned as a result of a US-China trade war.

"[Huawei is] open to sharing our 5G technologies and techniques with US companies, so that they can build up their own 5G industry," the New York Times quoted Ren, as saying. "This would create a balanced situation between China, the US and Europe."

In the Economist Ren said: "A ba-lanced distribution of interests is condu-cive to Huawei's survival."

The licensing could be advantageous to Huawei in helping to establish polar codes as the de facto method of enco-ding data, an area in which Huawei has a strong patent position can could there-fore take advantage.


Group to advance pluggable transceiver speeds to 800 GbpsThe QSFP-DD800 Multi-Source Agree-ment (MSA) Group has been created by several industry leaders to advance the development of high-speed, double-den-sity quad small form factor pluggable transceiver (QSFP-DD800) modules to support 800 Gbps connectivity.

The MSA group will help to address the increased global bandwidth consumption by enabling very high band-width interfaces. The MSA founder-pro-moters include Broadcom, Cisco, Finisar, Intel, Juniper Networks, Marvell, Molex and Samtec.

The new QSFP-DD800 interface expands on the QSFP-DD, a pluggable form factor with an eight-lane electrical interface widely adopted by the latest Ethernet switches. This MSA will enable QSFP-DD800’s eight electrical lanes to operate at 100 Gigabit per second (Gbps) each, by providing technical solutions for 800 Gbps module and connector systems. It will also define a module,

connector, stacked connector and a hybrid connector that is a BiPass/Flyover variant which can eliminate the signal losses on a traditional PCB.

The primary objective of the MSA Group is to define the specifications and promote industry adoption of the QS-FP-DD800. The new QSFP-DD800 specifi-cation is intended to be backward compa-tible with QSFP-DD, QSFP28 and QSFP+ modules and cables in order to address the upcoming industry demands of 25.6 Tb/s scale systems supporting dense 100 GbE or dense 400 GbE interfaces.

“The QSFP-DD form factor continues to be the cornerstone for the next step in pluggable module performance and density, while extending the industry’s investment, experience, cost structure and backward compatibility from prior generations” said Mark Nowell, founding member and MSA co-chair.


QinetiQ signs deal to develop secure satellite navigation receiversQinetiQ has signed a contract with the Ministry of Defence (MOD) Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) worth £67m to develop secure multi-constella-tion satellite receivers. The project, under the UK Robust Global Navigation System (R-GNS) programme, aims to provide accurate and resilient positioning, naviga-tion and timing (PNT) for military opera-tions around the world using the Galileo satellite contellation as well as GPS and the Russian and Chinese networks.

QinetiQ will use its advanced proces-sing technologies for secured navigation for use by individuals and platforms including autonomous land, maritime and air systems such as drones. It is working with Collins Aerospace and sub-contrac-tors Roke Manor Research, Raytheon Systems, Nottingham Scientific and Phixos to design and make the satellite receivers in the UK and free of the US ITAR technology restrictions.



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Eutelsat, Sigfox to launch nanosat constellation for IoTEuropean satellite operator Eutelsat Communications is set to launch nano-sat constellation comprising 25 nanosatellites over the next three years to provide connections for devices in the Internet of Things (IoT). The first two nanosats, each costing up to E1m rather than tens of millions of euros for larger space systems, will be built by Loft Orbital in San Francisco and the next two by Clyde Space in Glasgow.

The constellation, called ELO, will work with the Sigfox IoT network across transport, oil and gas, and agriculture applications. The expected launch dates in 2020 and 2021 will see the first four satellites enter commercial service as soon as they are reach orbit. If these are successful, other satellites will be added to the constellation, to reach a total of 25 satellites operational by 2022.

This constellation project follows on from an initial nanosatellite ordered by Eutelsat from Tyvak International last year

and planned for launch early next year. This test satellite will confirm the technical

performance of various waveforms between a sa-tellite in low Earth orbit and objects on the ground. The strategic partnership with Sigfox, which will integrate the global coverage provi-ded by the ELO constella-

tion into its existing range of IoT connec-tivity services. This opens up applications in areas like maritime transportation or logistics, but also the safety of people in emergency situations.

“Our partnership with Sigfox en-ables worldwide coverage through the combination of satellite and terrestrial IoT. This relatively modest investment at Group level, which is fully scalable, enables Eutelsat to access an additional potential growth lever in the context of its Connectivity strategy,” said Rodolphe Belmer, CEO of Eutelsat.


Operators to facilitate O-RAN testing and integrationA group of leading global operators, vendors and integrators have launched the Open Test and Integration Center (OTIC) initiative, which aims to accelerate multi-vendor, open and disaggregated next generation 5G wireless infrastructure by providing test and integration centers to facilitate product readiness. The group are collaborating on multi-vendor inte-roperability and validation activities for realizing O-RAN compliant disaggregated 5G access infrastructure that leverages open software and hardware hardened for commercial deployments.

The group comprises China Mobile and Reliance Jio along with participation from China Telecom, China Unicom, Intel, Radisys, Airspan, Baicells, CertusNet, Mavenir, Lenovo, Ruijie Network, Inspur, Samsung Electronics, Sylincom, WindRi-ver, ArrayComm, and Chengdu NTS.

The OTIC aim to expedite how the industry develops open RAN technolo-gies and products that are hardened and supported for real-world deployments


Satellite swarm to enable ubiquitous 5GA consortium of industry and science organisations is developing a software platform to enable a satellite-based com-munications layer to supplement for ter-restrial 5G mobile communications and enable nationwide coverage in Germany.

The space industry is changing as more and more private players are pushing their way into the state-domi-nated market and bringing along new business models. One consequence is the increased use of small satellites, which are inexpensive and flexible to use compared to previous large and expen-sive satellites.

According to a consortium led by Professor Armin Dekorsy (University of Bremen, Germany), this trend, which is often summarized under the buzzword "New Space", offers the opportunity to supply Germany with 5G mobile com-munications throughout the country. To-gether, the participants will first develop a software platform for evaluating and optimizing the latest 5G communication technologies for satellite networks and their mission planning.

To this end, the University of Bremen, DSI Aerospace Technologie GmbH, OHB System AG and ZARM Technik AG is part of the 5GSatOpt project ("De-sign, Evaluation and Optimization of 5G Satellite Constellations for the Internet of Everything and Everywhere").

The problem: by the end of 2022, at least 98 percent of households in Ger-many should be able to access 5G, but telecommunications providers will only be able to cover 80 percent of the area. Thus, many rural regions will continue to be left behind.

A network of small satellites can guarantee complete coverage and make data transmission more efficient overall. This is possible by sending a large number of satellites – a so-called mega-constellation – into a near-earth orbit and networking them with each other. "In addition to the communication level on the ground, a second level at an altitude of around 1,000 kilometers can be set up," explains Dekorsy.

Dekorsy's working group at the Tech-nology Centre for Computer Science

and Information Technology (TZI) at the University of Bremen has been involved in the development of the 5G mobile radio standard from the very beginning and has the necessary expertise in com-munications engineering. The working group Optimization and Optimal Control at the Center for Technomathematics at the University of Bremen contributes know-how in the optimization of com-plex systems, while ZARM focuses on mission planning. ZARM Technik addresses the alignment of satellites in space, while OHB and DSI have de-cades of experience in the design of satellites and communication modules.

In addition to Internet access in rural areas, such a network of small satellites could also be used for other purposes, such as earth observation and climate research.

The project is supported by the State of Bremen with funds from the EU ERDF programme.

www.ant.uni‑bremen.de/de/ projects/satopt


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Get smart at www.microchip.com/Smart

The Microchip name and logo and the Microchip logo are registered trademarks of Microchip Technology Incorporated in the U.S.A. and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their registered owners. © 2019 Microchip Technology Inc. All rights reserved. DS00002769A. MEC2237A-Eng-06-19

Smart Solutions to Accelerate DesignBuilding Blocks to Optimize Your Design’s Intelligence

As technology has evolved, more and more devices demand intelligent systems. Microchip has been on the forefront of this evolution, bringing you a broad portfolio of solutions that helps you:

• Easily find the right level of intelligence for your design with our broad portfolio of 8-, 16- and 32-bit MCUs, DSCs and MPUs

• Efficiently create differentiated designs with flexible peripherals and functions • Accelerate design time with our intuitive development environments, complete

reference designs, free software libraries and automatic code generation tools.

Learn how Microchip can get you to production faster by providing solutions that are not only smart, but also connected and secure.

Atomic receiver works with common communications signalsA new type of radio receiver sensor that uses atoms to receive commonly used communications signals has been de-monstrated by researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). This atom-based receiver has the potential to be smaller and work better in noisy environments than conventional radio receivers, among other possible advantages. Cesium atoms were used to receive digital bits (1s and 0s) in the most common communications format of phase shifting or phase modulation. Here, radio signals or other electromagnetic waves are shifted (modulated) relative to one another over time and the information (or data) is encoded in this modulation.

"The point is to demonstrate that one can use atoms to receive modulated signals," project leader Chris Holloway said. "The method works across a huge range of frequencies. The data rates are not yet the fastest out there, but there are other benefits here, like it may work better than conventional systems in noisy environments."

In their paper, the team described a quantum sensor that received signals based on real-world phase-shifting methods. A 19.6 GHz transmission frequency was chosen because it was convenient for the experiment, but it also could be used in future wireless commu-nications systems, Holloway said.

The NIST team previously used the same basic technique for imaging and measurement applications. Researchers use two different colour lasers to prepare atoms contained in a vapour cell into high-energy ("Rydberg") states, which have novel properties such as extreme sensitivity to electromagnetic fields. The frequency of an electric field signal affects the colours of light absorbed by the atoms.

In the new experiments, the team used a recently developed atom-based mixer to convert input signals into new frequen-cies. One radio-frequency (RF) signal acts as a reference and a second RF signal serves as the modulated signal carrier. Differences in frequency and the offset between the two signals were detected and measured by probing the atoms.

While many researchers have pre-viously shown that atoms can receive other formats of modulated signals, the NIST team was the first to develop an atom-based mixer that could handle phase shifting.

Depending on the encoding scheme, the atom-based system received up to about 5 megabits of data per second. This is close to the speed of older, third-generation (3G) cell phones.

The researchers also measured the accuracy of the received bit stream based on a conventional metric called error vector magnitude (EVM). EVM compares a received signal phase to the ideal state and thus gauges mo-dulation quality. The EVM in the NIST experiments was below 10 percent, which is decent for a first demonstra-tion, Holloway said. This is comparable to systems deployed in the field, he added.

With further development, atom-based receivers may offer many benefits over conventional radio technologies, according to the paper. For example, there is no need for traditional electro-nics that convert signals to different fre-quencies for delivery because the atoms do the job automatically. The antennas and receivers can be physically smaller, with micrometer-scale dimensions. In addition, atom-based systems may be less susceptible to some types of interfe-rence and noise. The atom-based mixer also can measure weak electric fields precisely. The researchers now plan to improve the new receiver by reducing laser noise and other unwanted effects.

REFERENCEPaper: C.L. Holloway, M.T. Simons, J.A. Gordo and D. Novotny. 2019. Detecting and Receiving Phase Modulated Signals with a Rydberg Atom-Based Receiver. IEEE Antennas and Wireless Propagation Letters. September 2019 issue. DOI: 10.1109/LAWP.2019.2931450



Wireless communications often use a format called phase shifting or phase modulation, in which the signals are shifted relative to one another in time. In this example, the communications signal (blue) contains periodic rever-sals relative to the reference signal (red). These reversals are the blips that look like cats' ears. The information (or data) is encoded in this modulation. Image courtesy of Holloway/NIST.

Wireless power chip market to soarA report form IHS Markit | Technology expects the market for wireless power chips to top 2bn units by 2023 with large growth in the automotive sector. Global shipments of wireless power receivers (Rx) and transmitters (Tx) are set to more than triple from 2018 to 2023.

Combined Rx and Tx shipments will rise to 2.1bn units in 2023, rising at a CAGR of 28.2 percent from 611 million in 2018, as reported by the Wireless Power Market Tracker – Q1 2019 report from IHS Markit | Technology. The expansion is driven by broad-based demand from

multiple markets, including wearables, computing, medical, smart homes, kitchen appliances, power tools, robotics, industrial, infrastructure, electric vehicles and automotive in-cabin systems.


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Get smart at www.microchip.com/Smart

The Microchip name and logo and the Microchip logo are registered trademarks of Microchip Technology Incorporated in the U.S.A. and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their registered owners. © 2019 Microchip Technology Inc. All rights reserved. DS00002769A. MEC2237A-Eng-06-19

Smart Solutions to Accelerate DesignBuilding Blocks to Optimize Your Design’s Intelligence

As technology has evolved, more and more devices demand intelligent systems. Microchip has been on the forefront of this evolution, bringing you a broad portfolio of solutions that helps you:

• Easily find the right level of intelligence for your design with our broad portfolio of 8-, 16- and 32-bit MCUs, DSCs and MPUs

• Efficiently create differentiated designs with flexible peripherals and functions • Accelerate design time with our intuitive development environments, complete

reference designs, free software libraries and automatic code generation tools.

Learn how Microchip can get you to production faster by providing solutions that are not only smart, but also connected and secure.

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www.mwee.com MW10 October 2019


As the Internet of Things (IoT), grows a key demand for devices is that they or the systems that interact with them know where they are located. It is beco-ming important even for devices that are not expected to be mobile in normal use.

By making it possible to determine a device’s physical location when it joins the network, the process of commis-sioning and provisioning can be almost entirely automated. The only manual intervention comes when placing the device itself at the destination. There needs to be no doubt that an environ-mental sensor, for example, is recording values from a particular point. By upda-ting location at regular intervals, opera-tors can also be sure that a sensor has not been moved, either inadvertently or deliberately, to be sure it is not taking inaccurate readings.

For other applications, the regular determination of location is a vital as-pect of asset management and service deployment. For example, farmers want to be sure that automated fertiliser and pest-control systems are working as expected and treating fields correct-ly. This can be monitored using fixed soil sensors as well as trackers in the mechanical systems used to deliver the treatments.

Some implementors have turned to various forms of Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers to provide the location information their devices and related IoT services re-quire. Although there are now multiple constellations in orbit that can provi-de the necessary positioning signals, GNSS protocols have a common approach. Each satellite has onboard a highly accurate atomic clock. The re-ceiver can use comparisons of the time of arrival of the clock signals sent out by these satellites in conjunction with ephemeris databases to determine their location anywhere in the world, just as long as sufficient satellites are in view.

There are several drawbacks asso-ciated with GNSS-based location. One is device cost. The GNSS processor needs to be able to receive the compa-ratively weak signals sent by orbiting satellites, decrypt the messages each of them provides and compare real-

time signals over a period of time. This consumes significant compute resource, which either demands a more powerful host processor in the IoT node or some form smart coprocessor. The second drawback is one of energy consumption. To be able to determine position accura-tely, the GNSS receiver needs to be active for long periods of time during which it is actively listening to the RF channels. As a result, there are severe restrictions on how many bat-tery-powered applications can use GNSS economically.

An alternative approach is to employ existing terrestrial communication systems such as Bluetooth, cellular or WiFi. This can be achieved even if the core protocol does not pro-vide direct support for location services. In these systems, signal strength acts as a proxy for distance between the IoT device and each of the bases-tations from which the device is able to receive signals. A key advantage of using signal strength is that it does not require any actual connection to the protocol in the device at all, which lets implementors create positioning systems without nee-ding active cooperation from software running in the basestations. The key requirement is that the implementor has access to a database of known bases-tation locations and IDs.

There are several drawbacks with the signal-strength method. One is due to the way in which RF signals propagate. Very close to the basestation the signal will be strong. But as distance increases, there is a rapid drop-off in intensity that levels off over a longer range. At these longer ranges, a large change in dis-tance to the basestation will not affect signal strength much. This leads to large errors in the estimated distance for cases where the device is far from any of the basestations that it can detect.

At the longer ranges, the problem of determining range through signal stren-

gth is exacerbated by obstructions such as walls and windows. A problem that will be common to systems deployed inside a building. Similarly, signals affected by reflections and interference from trees and other external obstacles will adversely affect the accuracy of the measurements of the signals. Gene-rally, it will lead to the system dedu-cing that it is further from the source than it really is. However, it is possible that constructive interference due to multipath effects will slightly increase apparent signal strength and reduce the estimated distance.

As with GNSS, a system based on time-of-flight would provide much better accuracy than signal strength. Obstructions such as walls and window for line-of-sight communications have no measurable effect on the time it takes for a signal to arrive. This greatly

Smart Networks Put the IoT on the MapBy Richard Lansdowne, Senior Director of LoRa Cloud™ Services, Semtech Corporation

Figure 1 - Signal propagation means strength measurements lose accuracy with distance and they are also adversely affected by obstructions such as windows.

Figure 2 - Time of flight for RF transmission is largely unaffected by obstructions and is directly proportional to distance from the transmitter.

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reduces the error for systems that are located inside buildings or enclosures.

An advantage that a terrestrial time-of-flight system has over GNSS is that the core signal can also be much stron-ger and easier to receive. This reduces the energy and cost of the receiving terminal and makes it possible to receive positioning signals indoors, which is not often achievable with GNSS-based sys-tems. There remain potential issues for signals that suffer from multipath effects, but these can be mitigated through the use of antenna diversity on the recei-ver as each of the antennas will likely employ signals that have experienced a different number of reflections on their respective journeys from the transmitter.

Terrestrial implementation of time-of-flight systems have further advan-tages over GNSS. They can implement bidirectional protocols. These make it possible to offload the process of determining location to systems in the network rather than relying entirely on processing bandwidth available on the device to be located. With processing moved into the gateway, techniques such as antenna diversity make grea-ter sense in terms of relative cost. The network hardware can also take ad-vantage of advanced location-mapping techniques such as machine learning to take account of local factors that affect not just signal timing but signal stren-gth. Such gateway-based techniques lie at the heart of the location services now available through LoRaWAN®.

In the LoRa Cloud™ Geolocation Service, the only step a device needs to take to determine its location is to simply transmit a frame. Unlike many other wireless network protocols where the end device is generally associated with a single basestation, all LoRaWAN gateways within range can receive and process the frame. This requirement is a part of the core protocol and is the main reason why network-based geolocation is a simple addition with LoRaWAN networks where it was too costly and complex for cellular systems.

When using the LoRa Cloud Geo-location, all the gateways that receive and decode the frame report key information such as signal strength and the signal-to-noise ratio while many are now equipped with specialist hardware to accurately report the time of arrival too. This information is then forwarded in a query to a resolver such as the LoRa Cloud Geolocation which then works to compare their results in order to determine the most likely location

of the device based on all the data at its disposal.

The determined location is then reported to the Cloud systems that manage it using a standard API request/response. This makes it possible to use increasingly advanced pro-cessing techniques to improve accuracy over time without any impact on the installed base of IoT devices, and without consuming any power within them other than what is nee-ded to transmit a frame.

The LoRa Cloud Geolocation is based around an advanced solver technology. This em-ploys machine-learning and statistical techniques to offer high-accuracy estimations of device position. The solver can use variations in estimates over time to exclude re-ception data that has a high likelihood of having been heavily impacted by the transmission channel causing errors in the measurements. For example, an excessively noisy signal would have a relatively high uncertainty on the time-of-flight estimate compared to one with less noise. With multiple versions of the measurement of the transmission path available from, for example, antenna diversity or multiple transmissions, the statistical outliers can be discarded. As more signals are received, the solver can learn the local environment around each device and build up a better picture of how signal strength and time of arrival relates to the actual distance from each gateway. Not only that, the system can apply the same local knowledge to new devices as they are added to the network. As a result, the accuracy of the system improves with usage in a manner that is almost impossible to achieve with on-device positioning algorithms.

There are further advantages to network-based processing. In contrast to on-device positioning, the location services are largely immune to inad-vertent or deliberate jamming. Any radio signal is jammed or blocked at the receiver. Therefore, with on-device positioning, a single jammer that is rela-tively close to the device, can comple-tely block all the location signals. With distributed reception as in LoRaWAN network location, it is extremely difficult to jam the transmissions unless ex-tremely high-power levels or multiple coordinated jammers are in use near to all the LoRaWAN gateways.

Although the LoRa Cloud Geolocation provides low-energy, high-accuracy po-sitioning for many IoT use-cases, there are situations where a system designer may want to employ hybrid location strategies. Take, for example, an IoT-en-abled pet collar that is intended to help track and locate animals both inside and outside the home. At home, the collar can take advantage of local connecti-vity to provide location information. The collar may receive nearby Bluetooth or WiFi signals to provide highly localised information on the pet’s position.

If the animal moves outside, WiFi, GNSS or LoRaWAN location services can be employed. WiFi will become less useful if the pet has escaped its kennel and strayed too far afield in an area where there are few WiFi access points. A hybrid system makes it possible to ensure the pet can be tracked even over longer distances as GNSS or LoRaWAN will continue to work in many circums-tances. However, it is worth bearing in mind the relative energy consumption of each type of fix request. For the power consumption of a single GPS fix, the col-lar could perform approximately 10 WiFi scans. And for that same power, the col-lar could send 100 LoRaWAN messages, indicating how efficient network-based location can be.

Now that simple, instant network-based geolocation that can simul-taneously support every device connec-ted to a network has arrived, even those devices with severe constraints on cost and power can take advan-tage of location information in order to deliver on the next generation of IoT applications.


Figure 3 - Network-based location services can use comparisons of signal parameters detected by multiple receivers based on a single device transmission.

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After 20 successful years, Bluetooth is still the fastest growing wireless pro-tocol available. Part of the reason for Bluetooth’s popularity is its ability to adapt and evolve. Just ten years ago the concept of a wireless beacon was unheard of, but today they are becoming commonplace. More recently the stan-dard has reacted to market demand for lower operating power and more flexible network topologies. While it can’t lay claim to inventing mesh networking, Bluetooth has embraced it, which will only help to ensure its future proliferation in a wide range of Internet of Things (IoT) applications and environments.

Bluetooth coexists with many other wireless protocols operating in the license-free bands, and a number of them have adopted the sub-GHz band to address the nascent demand for application-appropriate wireless tech-nologies for the IoT. The applications in question come with a particular set of requirements, such as range, low power and low bandwidth.

A report on Low Power Wide Area Networks, published in March 2018 by ON World, (a business intelligence pro-vider focusing on the IoT), identifies 43 unique applications for sub-GHz techno-logies. Many of these applications focus on making our cities, towns, factories and homes smarter (see Figure 1). That same report projects a combined reve-nue of more than $50 billion for these devices and their services by 2022.

LOW-POWER WIDE-AREA NETWORKSOperating in the sub-GHz frequency bandwidth enables wireless technologies including Sigfox and LoRa to offer ranges in the tens of kilometers across Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs). Long range is a key strength of a sub-GHz signal, as it is subject to less attenuation – or path loss – than a signal in the 2.4 GHz range (such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Low Energy, for example).

Long range enables a single de-vice to be placed in a remote location and still connect to a network. This is fundamentally changing the shape of IoT networks, as many of these distant devices will only ever communicate with a gateway or concentrator, and never interact with their neighboring endpoints.

LPWAN endpoints effectively of-fer a “fit and forget” user experience, as they will likely be preconfigured to connect to the network out of the box. This approach has many benefits for the deployment of target applications, such as smart sensors or actuators – until they fail or need an over-the-air (OTA) update. This is where LPWANs tend to struggle. Because they were conceived with low power and even lower payloads in mind, it generally isn’t feasible to have a ‘meaningful conversation’ with a smart sensor located in the middle of nowhere using an LPWAN connection. That means interrogating it to find out what went wrong is impractical, and which also precludes OTA updates.

The network will be able to report a remote fault, but unless the endpoint also integrates a fallback wireless connection, such as cellular, the remedy may need to be administered locally. Once the engineer is on site, connec-ting to the device may also be an issue, because proximity doesn’t overcome the issue of low bandwidth for an LPWAN.

This is where a standards-based technology like Bluetooth Low Ener-gy (LE) can provide added value to an LPWAN application. With a growing nu-mber of multiprotocol solutions coming to market, it makes sense to use a wire-less device that supports both Bluetooth and a sub-GHz technology, providing the benefits of both protocols in a single device. With data rates of up to 2 Mbit/s, Bluetooth can be used to control and update an endpoint without having to physically access it.

NETWORK FLEXIBILITYAnother way to think about multipro-tocol technology is in terms of the

Multiprotocol Connectivity Addresses the Challenges of Managing and Updating IoT Devices on sub-GHz NetworksBy Mikko Savolainen, Senior Marketing Manager, Bluetooth Products, Silicon Labs

Figure 1: Applications for sub-GHz communications are expanding rapidly across the IoT.

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network topology. As explained earlier, LPWANs tend to ope-rate in a star topology, while Bluetooth supports both point-to-point and mesh networking. We could add any number of additional endpoints to the network and show them communi-cating with each other over a mesh network at higher transfer rates. In an IoT application, this would provide the infrastruc-ture for devices in the same proximity, allowing them to form a Field Area Network (FAN).

This combination of low power and long range with high bandwidth over a short range effectively provides a compre-hensive solution for wireless connectivity, one that overcomes the shortfalls of both Bluetooth and proprietary protocols in the sub-GHz band while building on the benefits of each.

One of those benefits is location-based services. Thanks to the addition of its beacon mode – a feature that is unique to Bluetooth – beacons can act as triggers for events based on proximity. Because those events are managed by a subsequent system, the way in which beacons can be used is virtually unli-mited. Beaconing also supports positioning using triangulation, which is becoming increasingly useful for indoor navigation and way finding. Sensor nodes attached to assets that move or can be moved in an industrial environment or warehouse, for exa-mple, can be tracked and located using the beacon technology now available in Bluetooth. The accuracy is dependent on the environment as well as the number of beacons in an area, but it can be as low as 1 meter. In an autonomous environment this provides another level of information that can be used to help improve safety as well as further increasing productivity.

SINGLE-CHIP SOLUTIONSIt is now possible to develop devices that support both sub GHz and 2.4 GHz wireless technologies with a minimal increase to the Bill of Materials. This is achieved using a sys-tem on a chip (SoC) device that integrates a microcontroller and one RF transceiver capable of supporting multiple proto-cols and frequency bands. This innovative SoC architecture saves BOM cost, space and system power over a design that implements two discrete radio subsystems. The single SoC runs application firmware that divides the processing resources between two protocols, as Figure 2 shows. For example, by using a low duty cycle for Bluetooth communications, the device can remain in listening mode on the sub-GHz frequency for relatively long periods.

CONCLUSIONSub-GHz technology fulfills a market need for low-to-medium-throughput, long-range networks where connecting end nodes to the Internet without an IoT gateway may be difficult, if not impossible. Bluetooth enhances the functionality of sub-GHz networks by enabling direct, localized access to these end no-des. This can be achieved through the use of a multiprotocol, multiband SoC combined with advanced wireless scheduling techniques. Emerging Bluetooth beacon technology can be used in concert with many sub-GHz technologies, providing a convenient, cost-effective platform for location-based services.

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Figure 2: Time-division processing allows a single SoC to run two protocols.

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Phased-Array Radar

ABSTRACTPhased-array radar systems utilize many transmit and receive channels to function. Historically, these platforms were built using separate transmit and receive integrated circuits (ICs). These systems used separate chips for digi-tal-to-analog converters (DACs) in the transmit (Tx) circuitry and analog-to-di-gital converters (ADCs) in the receive (Rx) circuitry. This separation has led to many large footprint, high cost, high power consumption systems in order to realize the channel count necessary to achieve the desired function. These systems also generally require long time-to-market due to manufacturing and calibration complexities. However, a recent approach utilizing integrated transceivers combines many functions once considered disparate into single ICs. Using these ICs enables small form factor, lower power consumption and cost, high channel-count phased-array radar platforms with a quicker time-to-market.

INTRODUCTION TO INTEGRATED TRANSCEIVERSIntegrated transceivers, such as the one shown in Figure 1, combine multiple functions onto a single IC. For example, the new transceiver integrates DACs, ADCs, local oscillator (LO) synthesizers, microprocessors, mixers, and more into a single 12 mm × 12 mm monolithic pro-duct. In addition, this product combines two receive channels and two transmit channels, as well as digital signal pro-cessing (DSP) components to achieve the desired instantaneous bandwidths required for the system. An application program interface (API) is also provided to operate the transceiver on a customer platform. Gain and attenuation control can be achieved by utilizing the on-chip front-end networks. Built-in initializa-tion and tracking calibration routines are offered to provide the performance required for many communication and military applications.

These integrated transceivers are capable of creating all the clock signals

needed for the transmitters and re-ceivers by injecting a single reference clock signal known as REF_CLK. On-chip phase-locked loops (PLLs) then synthesize all required clocks for the DAC/ADC sampling, LO generation, and microprocessor clock. If the internal LO phase noise is not sufficient for a customer’s application, the user can alternatively inject their own low phase noise external LO.

Data from the part is offloaded via a standardized JESD204b multigiga-bit serial data interface. This interface enables large amounts of simultaneous data reception and transmission. The new integrated transceiver solution can help to provide the interface IP to streamline a customer’s time-to-mar-ket. If deterministic latency and data synchronization is needed, the user can utilize the built-in multichip synchroni-zation (MCS) feature and issue a SYS_REF signal to act as a master timing reference for an initial lane alignment sequence (ILAS).1

Additionally, the LO phase of a Tx or Rx channel can be made determinis-tic with respect to a master reference phase using the built-in RFPLL phase sync feature. By utilizing both the MCS and the RFPLL phase sync features, phase alignment can be replicated when either initializing the part, fre-quency tuning, or toggling the radio on and off in software. An example of the new integrated transceiver providing deterministic phase with these features enabled is shown in Figure 2.

USING MULTIPLE INTEGRATED TRANSCEIVERSIf more than two receivers and two transmitters are required for a sys-tem, the user can still benefit from the small size achieved with monolithic Rx and Tx channels by using multiple integrated transceivers. An example of this technique is shown in Figure 3. It is possible to synchronize multi-ple integrated transceivers by utilizing concurrent SYS_REF pulses to trigger

Integrated Transceivers Enable Small Form Factor Phased-Array Radar PlatformsBy Mike Jones, Peter Delos Analog Devices, Inc.

Figure 1: The ADRV9009 is an example of an integrated transceiver that combines many functions into a single IC.

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Phased-Array Radar

internal dividers for all ICs at the same time. These SYS_REF pulses can be is-sued by either clock chips or baseband processors with programmable delays to account for any length mismatches between routes to the various ICs. Both the data paths and the multiple LOs across the multiple chips are capable of being deterministic.

INTEGRATED TRANSCEIVERS AS THE BACKBONE OF PHASED-ARRAY RADAR PLATFORMSIncreasing channel counts by using synchronized integrated transceivers then allows these devices to serve as the backbone of phased-array radar platforms. When combining phase- and amplitude-aligned Tx and Rx channels, using multiple integrated transceivers has demonstrated system-level dyna-mic range, spurious, and phase noise improvements.

On-chip DSP features such as nu-merically-controlled oscillators (NCOs) and digital upconverters (DUCs) or digital downconverters (DDCs) enable system-level spurious decorrelation methods now within a single IC.2

Combining receiver channels using multiple integrated transceivers has demonstrated both improved system-le-vel noise spectral densities (NSDs) and improved spurious performance. This has improved the dynamic range of a phased-array radar system by lowering the effective noise floor of the system but maintaining the channel full-scale power. Figure 4 shows measured sys-tem-level results when combining up to eight integrated transceiver Rx channels to effectively increase the number of bits achieved in a phased-array system. Note that the NSD, and the calculated noise floor as indicated by the red line in each plot, is improved by ~6 dB when going from one channel to eight channels. This is because, although there are eight channels total, there are only four dis-tinct, uncorrelated LOs (that is, NLO = 4) among the four integrated transceivers used to create those eight channels.

This leads to an improvement of

NSD Improvement = 10Log10 (NLO) = Log10 (4) ≈ 6 dB which comes close to the experimen-

tal results provided by the integrated transceiver. Additionally, undesired image frequencies sum in an uncorre-lated manner to achieve system-level spurious performance improvements. With increased channel counts, this

Figure 2: The built-in RFPLL phase sync feature provides a system with a deterministic phase relationship with respect to a master reference source.

Figure 4: Combining Rx channels using the ADRV9009 integrated transceiver leads to lowering noise spectral densities and improved dynamic range.

Figure 3: Multiple integrated transceivers can be used to increase the channel count of a system.

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Phased-Array Radar

improvement can be further enhanced, leading to a scalable system.

Additionally, after phase aligning and combining multiple integrated trans-ceiver channels, the phase noise of the phased-array system can be improved. The top three traces of Figure 5 show measured results indicating improved phase noise performance when com-bining eight transmit channels using the internal LOs of four integrated transceiver ICs. Once again, in the case when there are four distinct and uncorrelated LOs (that is, NLO = 4), the phase noise is improved by ~6 dB when going from one Tx channel to eight Tx channels. Increasing channel count can further improve the phase noise of the phased-array radar system. Alternatively, one could inject an external LO to each subarray composed of NTRx integrated transceivers and improve the starting phase noise at the subarray level, as is shown with the blue trace in Figure 5. However, this is at the expense of each element within that subarray being correlated since they all share the same LO source, and they are thereby not capable of providing channel summing improvements within the subarray itself. For the external LO phase noise data shown in Figure 5, a Rohde and Schwarz SMA100B signal generator is used for the external LO source.

Integrated DSP features such as NCOs, digital phase shifters, and DUCs/DDCs allow for baseband phase- and frequency-shifting in the digital domain, thereby enabling digital beamforming in a multichannel, integrated-transcei-ver-based, phased-array radar system. Due to this bundling of functions on a single IC, a system is now capable of achieving antenna lattice spacings with the integrated transceivers in many pertinent phased-array applications. Increasing channel counts with more transceivers can generally result in narrower beams, but at the expense of increasing system footprint. Howe-ver, with the multiple functions now in a single monolithic IC, this increase in footprint is now smaller than in the past. After simulating radiation patterns using MATLAB®, Figure 6 shows how increa-sing from N = 23 to N = 210 channels results in a narrowing of the beam and a deeper theoretical lobe amplitude. The power nulls in practice will be dictated by the antenna design.

CONCLUSIONThe integration of multiple digital and analog functions within a single IC

Figure 6: DSP fea-tures now enable digital phase shifting using the on-chip NCOs and DDCs/DUCs. Increasing channel count and optimum phase shifting can result in a narrowing of the beam formed by the integrated transceivers.

Figure 5: Combining Tx channels of multi-ple ADRV9009s when using the internal LO leads to improved system-level phase noise performance. External LO injection provides an improved starting phase noise for the subarray.

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Phased-Array Radar

allows for smaller form factor phased-array radar systems. These systems can enable both digital beamforming and hybrid beamforming, depending on the system specifications. System-level performance improvements using Analog De-vices’ ADRV9009 have been demonstrated. These integrated devices enable a new variety of systems which serve multiple applications with the same hardware.

REFERENCES[1] Harris, J. What Is JESD204 and Why Should We Pay Atten-

tion to It? Analog Devices Technical Article, MS-2374, 1-4. October 2013.

[2] Delos, P., Jones, M., and Robertson, M. RF Transceivers Enable Forced Spurious Decorrelation in Digital Beamfor-ming Phased Arrays. Analog Devices Technical Article. August 2018.

ABOUT THE AUTHORSMike Jones is a principal electrical design engineer with Ana-log Devices working in the Aerospace and Defense business unit in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Peter Delos is a technical lead in the Aerospace and Defense Group at Analog Devices in Greensboro, NC. He is currently focused on miniaturizing high performance receiver, waveform generator, and synthesizer designs for phased array applications.


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Tiny energy-harvesting tile for IoT sensors outputs over 1-mW

A manu-facturer of silicon-based thermoelec-tric products, Californian startup Matrix Industries has partnered with CMOS power management

ICs manufacturer Torex Semiconductor to develop a novel energy-harvesting reference design for sensors.

The partnership will combine Matrix’ expertise in ther-moelectric material sciences and thermal engineering with and Torex expertise in low power consumption and energy efficient power management technologies to deliver a tile-shaped energy-harvesting platform, measuring about 100- x 100- x 25-mm and capable of an average power output in excess of 1-mW, with peak outputs up to 8-mW.

Matrix and Torex provide a complete off the shelf refe-rence for Watt Smart Farming and Industrial IoT applica-tions, based on Matrix’s PowerTile Thermo-Electric-Genera-tor (TEG) tied with the company’s Mercury energy harvesting chip IC and power management solutions from Torex.

The companies anticipate such power tiles will enable a variety of battery-less IoT sensor applications.


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5G Timing

Timing is the heartbeat of any electro-nic system and 5G networks will be particularly dependent on the accu-racy, stability and reliability of their clock sources. Traditional quartz timing devices used in 4G networks are faced with new challenges to support higher bandwidths and narrower channels of coming 5G networks. MEMS technolo-gy solves these problems, meeting all timing requirements while performing significantly better than quartz solutions in the presence of dynamic environmen-tal stressors such as shock, vibration, and rapid temperature changes. In addition, a 100% semiconductor supply chain inherently provides MEMS solu-tions with superior quality and reliability compared to quartz, which is critical to supporting the quality-of-service planned for 5G applications.

MERGING TRENDS IN 5G RRU TIMING The transition from 4G to 5G networks has resulted in two key emerging trends: cloudification and densification. Deploying cloud technology in core networks, or cloudification, is needed to enable real-time processing of voice and video applications. The connection between radio heads and base sta-tions, which are point-to-point physical links in 4G, is established in 5G using packet-based networks maintained in the cloud. Time synchronization throughout this packet network requires adoption of new standards, including IEEE 1588 and evolved common public radio interface (eCPRI), that pose new challenges for timing performance and reliability.

At the same time, new mobile services are expected to increase broadband cellular traffic. To increase 5G data rates, the distance between base stations and user terminals will reduce, causing a corresponding rise in the number of cell sites and nodes in the network. This densification of radio access networks is a fundamen-tal shift introduced by 5G networks, and is critical for increasing capacity in

metro areas with a high concentration of users. Cellular radios will become ubiquitous throughout the 5G urban landscape, where they will appear mounted on telephone poles, lamp posts, building corners, and curbside municipal power-supply cabinets. Such densification will subject 5G radios to a broad range of environmental condi-tions that demand a higher level of performance for timing devices.

PACKET DELAY VARIATIONService operators planning to offer new real-time 5G applications re-quire time-synchronized networks. IEEE 1588 and eCPRI technologies enable this time synchronization over packet networks. One consequence of connecting a central unit (CU) to a remote radio head (RRH) over a packet network is the time-delay variation of packets traveling between ends of a link. Such packet delay variation (PDV), also called network jitter or packet jitter, adds noise to time values de-rived from the network, and therefore degrades the user experience of real-time services. PDV is caused by many factors in the system. For example, any active network element that processes packets, such as a switch, is subject to varying load conditions. This load is a function of the number of packets to process and the complexity of that

processing, both of which vary over time with network usage, and are key sources of PDV.

The impact of PDV in the RRH can be reduced by increasing the stability of the oscillator used within its IEEE 1588 servo loop. This servo loop acts as a low-pass filter to the incoming PDV, and a high-pass filter to timing noise injected by the oscillator. Thus, the quieter, or more stable, the oscillator, the lower the servo-loop bandwidth can be adjusted to filter the input PDV and output a clock that faithfully recreates the time scale present at the other end of the link. This “cleaned” output clock is then used to accurately discipline the oscillator, and the feedback loop repeats.

The stability of an oscillator the-refore directly influences the timing accuracy derived by a 5G network. The most common stability specification for an oscillator is frequency-stabi-lity-over-temperature. Often, oscillators are specifically selected for this number, commonly assumed to be a proxy for overall stability. However, this speci-fication fails to capture the stability of an oscillator when subjected to thermal gradients. Here, the frequency versus temperature slope, also referred to as dF/dT, can be a important factor in ti-ming accuracy. Figures 1 and 2 illustrate the advantage of SiTime Elite Platform™ TCXOs compared to competitive quartz

Solving the Tough Timing Challenges of 5G Wireless InfrastructureBy Dr. Gary Giust with SiTime

Figure 1: SiTime SiT5356 ±100 ppb TCXOs feature industry-leading low frequency- versus-tempera-ture-slope (dF/dT), which improves PDV filtering and therefore timing accuracy, necessary for deploying suc-cessful real-time services.

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5G Timing

devices for providing excellent stability in changing thermal environments.

The electronics in 5G radios are convection cooled, and are therefore subject to a wide variety of thermal conditions. SiTime MEMS-based de-vices do not require physical covers nor dedicated PCB keep-out regions, often required by quartz devices for thermal protection to maintain datasheet speci-fications.

ENVIRONMENTAL SHOCK AND VIBRATIONDensification in 5G networks means radios will be mounted on a variety of outdoor objects that are subjected to vibration from many sources, including trucks, trains, cars, wind, and thunder. Oscillators deployed in these radios need to maintain stable performance during vibration to prevent dropped links and associated operator fines. Figure 3 illustrates the robustness of SiTime Elite Platform TCXOs under vibration com-pared to quartz TCXOs, which degrade during vibration and can go out of spe-cification potentially for as long as the vibration continues. This can be minutes for a long freight train nearby, or even longer on a windy day. Such robustness is inherent to the MEMS architecture, eli-minating expensive housings or thermal and mechanical protection commonly required by quartz devices.

QUALITY AND RELIABILITYDensification also demands a higher level of quality and reliability to minimize service calls to an expansive deployment of 5G radios. Precision TCXO and OCXO devices in 5G RRUs, not present in 4G, present new locations for servicing fai-lures that can be difficult to access.

SiTime MEMS oscillators have inhe-rent advantages over quartz device that allow them to perform more reliably in extreme environments. SiTime deve-loped the MEMSFirstTM process, in which resonators are fully encapsulated in silicon and enclosed within a mi-cro-vacuum chamber [2]. The combina-tion of very small mass of the resonator and its stiff silicon crystal structure makes them durable and extremely resistant to external stresses such as shock and vibration. And unlike quartz, all-silicon MEMS resonators have negligible aging. Additionally, optimally designed voltage regulators integrated into the oscillator circuitry reject power supply noise to maintain stability in noisy environments. These features lead to higher quality and reliability le-

vels, and fewer field failures, for SiTime MEMS oscillators compared to quartz devices.

COMPARING SITIME MEMS AND QUARTZ DEVICESKey benefits of SiTime Elite Platform TCXOs compared to traditional quartz TCXOs for use in 5G RRU equipment include:

● 50x better quality (DPPM)● 30x improved reliability (MTBF)● 20x better mechanical shock resis-

tance (MIL-STD-883 Method 2002)● 10x better frequency stability in the

presence of rapid thermal gradients● 3x better random vibration resis-

tance (MIL-STD-883, Method 2007)● No frequency jumps or activity dips● Excellent power supply noise


Because of these benefits, an Elite Platform TCXO designed into 5G RRU equipment enables a single radio de-sign to be deployed globally, regardless of environmental conditions. Such a design saves development time, speeds time to market, and streamlines pro-duction. The robust timing provided by these radios, once deployed in the field, will minimize disruptions to 5G services and ensure a better user experience.

REFERENCES[1] SiTime Corp., “DualMEMS and Tur-

boCompensation Temperature Sen-sing Technology”, Technology Paper.

[2] SiTime Corp., “SiTime’s MEMS First and EpiSeal™ Process”, Application Note 20001.


Figure 2: SiTime SiT5356 ±100 ppb MEMS-based TCXOs provide superior stability during rapid thermal gradients compared to tier-one ±50 ppb quartz-based TCXOs. The SiT5356 performance is enabled by proprietary DualMEMS™ architecture and TurboCompensation™ temperature-compensation schemes [1].

Figure 3: SiTime MEMS oscillators provide excellent shock and vibration performance compared to quartz devices, enabling more options for den-sification for 5G networks. Data shown is for 7.5 g RMS per MIL-STD-883F, Method 2026.

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Energy Harvesting

As solar energy advances to being a viable alternative to fossil fuels, there is a new source of energy based on neutri-nos that could power everything day and night. In 2015, it was discovered that neutrinos have mass, so in theory, they can impact matter and give up some of their kinetic energy.

Neutrino Energy Group is looking to make neutrino-based power generators a reality in the near future by designing materials that can convert the kinetic energy of a neutrino into electricity. What is more such devices could be tiny and built into machines of all sizes to autonomously power the IoT without the need for a grid

Scientists recently discovered that trilayer graphene conducts electricity with no net energy loss at 1.7 degrees Kelvin, which is just slightly above absolute zero. The researchers who made this discovery envision trilayer graphene as a replace-ment for existing superconductors.

After this discovery, Holger Thorsten Schubart, the CEO of the Neutrino Ener-gy Group patented a conductive material quite similar to the newly-discovered trilayer graphene superconductor. In his patent he describes a "neutrino film" that responds to the motion of neutrinos as they pass through the planet.

Similar to trilayer graphene super-conducting material, neutrino energy technology developed by the Neutri-no Energy Group uses thin layers of graphene to create a resonance from passing neutrinos that enables the conversion some of the neutrinos kine-tic energy into electricity.

In order to attain the required effect, several extremely thin layers of spiked graphene and silicon are applied to a suitable substrate. When neutrinos pass through these layers, they are not captured, but they do give the graphene vertical impulses, while the silicon par-ticles are caused to move in a horizontal direction. When the layers are of an optimal thinness, these atomic vibrations create a resonance that is carried over to the substrate, and the resulting kinetic energy can be converted into electricity.

The larger the area, the more power is produced, and even a simple calculation suffices to demonstrate that enough electricity can be produced to one day render power cables and electrical sockets things of the past.

The technology has been demons-trated repeatedly by Schubart and his team and has been shown to work in a laboratory setting at the University of Chicago. The technology can currently derive a small amount of electricity from passing neutrinos, but Schubart expects that this neutrino energy technology will be capable of powering small devices such as those expected to populate the IoT, smartwatches and smartphones within just a few years.

Professor Günther Krause, a scientific partner of the Neutrino Energy Group, pointed out that in order to fully utilize the energy of cosmic radiation – neutrino radiation in particular – newer, firmer, harder, and at the same time more elas-tic composites must be developed, be-cause they play a critical role in conver-ting the kinetic energy arising from the collision of neutrinos with molecules into electricity. In this context Krause pointed to a patent submitted under the number

WO2016142056A1 and stated that after the completion of extensive laboratory testing, practical solutions need to be developed that will make it possible to use the renewable and virtually unlimited electricity that can be gained from this technology. He also made it clear that these new approaches will require new methods and thought processes. Accor-ding to Krause, the implementation of this environmentally friendly technology will ultimately lead to a revolution in the field of energy production.

LOW POWER DEVICES OF THE FUTUREOne way that manufacturers are trying to reduce carbon emissions and pro-mote the switch to renewable energy is by reducing the power consumption of electronic devices. The internet is inter-facing with more types of devices than we ever imagined and while this trend promotes the increased pervasiveness of electronic devices in everyday life, a focus on maximum efficiency is driving the amount of power necessary to run most electronic devices down. In the future, the energy consumption of the next generation of internet-connected

IoT devices could be powered by Neutrino energy devicesBy Jean-Pierre Joosting

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Energy Harvesting

machines will be less than that of the current generation even though it will be more technically sophisticated.

Currently, the science of neutrinovol-taics is practically in its infancy, but in the near future, the increased power-ge-neration capacity of neutrino energy devices will coincide nicely with both the increased prevalence and reduced power capacity of new IoT devices.

One of the most exciting aspects of neutrino energy generation is that it is decentralized. Instead of relying on a central grid or home electrical line for all your electrical needs, neutrinovoltaic energy generators are small and self-suf-ficient. They generate energy constantly, and within a few years, neutrino energy devices will be capable of powering smartwatches, smartphones, and soon after, laptops.

According to Neutrino Energy Group this will happen in the near future. There will be no need to charge your phone or smartwatch, and with each new generation of electronic devices, power consumption will decrease. Within no

time, every member of the Internet of Things will be powered by the limitless, decentralized neutrino energy grid that is taking shape all over the planet.

LAND OF ETERNAL MACHINESNeutrino Energy Group contend that ma-chines that require low power and have a constant drip of neutrino energy will be more "alive" than the machines of today. They will be smarter, more connected, and more resilient. Together, they will create an unbreakable electronic web of which today's Internet of Things is nothing but a crude shadow.

Constantly drawing limitless power from the ether and performing incre-dibly data-rich tasks with the energy it currently takes to operate a single light-emitting diode, the neutrino-powe-red devices of the future will have taken a true step toward self-sufficiency.

People and machines live in a delicate balance, and the rise of the Internet of Things is making us ques-tion the line where "smart" begins and "analog" ends. The next generation

will look at ovens that don't connect to your smartphone as being weird, and within a decade or less, small devices like smartphones and smartwatches will be powered with nothing more than ethereal neutrinos.

In tandem with its main mission of developing new neutrinovoltaic de-vices, the Neutrino Energy Group is also focused on education and fur-ther discussion about the impact that neutrino energy technology will have on the future development of the human race and our use of electronic devices. It's time to start imagining a future of 50 years from now in which reliance on fossil fuels is nothing but a memory but we haven't suffered the hardships and privation that premature cessation of fossil fuel use would certainly cause. For the sake of humanity's future, the Neutrino Energy Group is making the fantastic machines of the future's Internet of Things possible with limitless neutrino energy.


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LF Edge continues rapid growthLF Edge, an umbrella organization within the Linux Foun-dation, has announced continued project momentum with the addition of two new projects (Baetyl and Fledge) and four new members. LF Edge aims to establish an open, interoperable framework for edge computing independent of hardware, silicon, cloud, or operating system.

Previously known as “OpenEdge” and initiated by Baidu, Baetyl is China’s first open source edge computing platform and is now part of the LF Edge umbrella of pro-jects. It seamlessly extends cloud computing, data and services to edge devices, enabling developers to build light, secure and scalable edge applications. The result is stronger processing power delivered to edge devices like smart home appliances, wearables and other IoT devices. Baetyl joins LF Edge as a Stage 1 project.

“As a founding member of LF Edge, Baidu Intelligent Cloud decided to donate Baetyl, the intelligent edge com-puting framework, to the community,” said Watson Yin, Vice President of Baidu and the General Manager of the Intelligent Cloud business group.

Fledge is an open source framework and community for the industrial edge focused on critical operations, predictive maintenance, situational awareness and safety. Contributed by Dianomic and formerly known as “Fo-gLAMP,” Fledge is architected to integrate IIoT, sensors and modern machines all sharing a common set of administration and application APIs with industrial “brown field” systems and the cloud. Fledge developers build smarter, better, cheaper industrial manufacturing solutions to accelerate Industrial 4.0 adoption. Fledge joins as a Stage 1 project.

www.lfedge.org, www.linuxfoundation.org

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Small direct ToF module delivers high accuracy

Measuring 2.2- x 3.6- x 1.0-mm, the TMF8801 direct time-of-flight (ToF) module released by ams supports accurate measurements from 2 cm up to 2.5 m while being more than 30% smaller than competing ToF sensors.

Even when placed below dirty or smudged cover glass, the device main-tains high accuracy thanks to its on-chip histogram processing. By integrating a VCSEL infrared emitter, multiple SPAD (single photon avalanche photo-diode) light detectors, time-to-digital converter, and on-chip microcontroller for processing histograms, the TMF8801 ToF module delivers superior ToF performance. Com-pared to distance averaging employed with an indirect ToF system, the direct ToF time measurement methodology used in the TMF8801 delivers higher accuracy true-distance measurements.

The small size and low power consumption of the TMF8801 is also well suited for fast-ranging collision avoidance detection used in autonomous vacuum cleaners, and industrial robotics. For display-based products such as mobile computing, the sensor can be used for user presence detection to automatically wake up or put the system into a low-power sleep mode based on the presence or absence of a user.


5G NR fading with a single radio test stationAnritsu has upgraded its popular MT8000A radio communication test sta-tion with new 5G protocol test functions.The upgrade uses 5G NR (New Radio) fading software when implementing built-in baseband fading tests, enabling the MT8000A to provide support for 3GPP TS 38.521-4 B.1/B.2 V15.0.0-compliant 5G NR channel (TDL) model tests using NR fading software implementing built-in baseband fading tests.

A fading test simulates the actual radio-wave propagation environment and is required for development of mobile devices. Previously, an external 5G RF fading simulator was required, and this is now implemented as an internal fader in the MT8000A, supporting either 2CC 4x4 MIMO tests with one MT8000A unit, or 8CC 2x2 MIMO tests with two units.

As a result, protocol test set-up in a fading environment is simpler and elimi-nation of external test equipment as well as compatibility with existing protocol functions helps cut development costs.

Mobile-terminal development requires 3GPP-compliant testing and evaluation to assure interoperability. These tests are not limited to static communications proto-cols and RF evaluations between mobiles and base stations, but also include Radio Resource Management (RRM) tests simulating a moving mobile unit, as well as evaluations, in a fading environment.

The MT8000A is for mobile-terminal vendors requiring efficient tests with good cost-performance covering a wide range of conditions. It is an all-in-one test platform for RF, Protocol, and Beam tests, as well as for beam-forming evaluations. In addition to supporting functions for simulating base-station NSA and SA modes required for development of 5G chipsets and terminals, it also supports the latest technologies, such as 4x4 MIMO for increasing data transmission speeds in the Sub-6 GHz band as well as 8CC for implementing wideband mmWave.

The MT8000A covers the key frequency bands used by the first 5G services, such as the Sub-6 GHz band (FR1) frequencies of 2.5 GHz, 3.5 GHz, 4.5 GHz, etc., and the mmWave band (FR2) frequencies of 28 GHz, 39 GHz, etc. The easy-to-use interface coupled with comprehensive RF measurement and NR fading software makes it easy to configure a reasonably priced cost-effective test environment.


Tiny SAW devices target 5G applicationsNew surface acoustic wave (SAW) devices from Murata nfor RF filtering and duplexer applications address the ongoing and ever increasing need to reduce the size of components in mobile phones, especially with the coming of 5G.

The SAYAV/SAYAR series for duplexing come in the 1612 size, and the SAFFW series in 0907 size for Rx filtering. They

claim to be the world's smallest devices with equal or better characteristics com-pared to conventional SAW devices.

For use in smart phones, WiFi home routers, M2M modules (industrial) and other IoT devices with LTE and WiFi, these SAW devices will appeal to engineers who are developing consumer and/or industrial devices with an LTE/Wifi function.

As smartphones now deliver more functions and performance, they need a larger battery capacity, and they tend to have more elaborate, space-hungry, built-in cameras. To create more space to mount components that enable extra functions and higher performance levels, smaller RF substrates are required for handling wireless signals.

At the same time, modern smart-phones support multiple bands while LTE now adopts wireless technologies that improve signal reception quality such as carrier aggregation and multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO). This has made RF circuits increasingly complex. Also, to support the upcoming imple-mentation of the fifth-generation mobile communications system (5G), RF circuits will inevitably become more complex at a faster pace.

To address these advancements in smartphone technologies, smaller RF circuit components are required. This is particularly true in the case of SAW devices which are placed between anten-nas and transmitting/receiving circuits to extract wireless signals at certain frequencies. They are components with a higher demand for smaller size because smartphones, even mid range models for specific regions, feature 14 to 15 SAW devices, while premium-class models that can be used worldwide have as many as 30 to 40 SAW devices. Demonstrably, there’s clearly a need for a space-saving solution to the size of SAW devices, one that Murata has addressed and achieved with this new range of devices.

Using its in-house experience and technology, Murata has successfully designed the devices to be smaller-sized products that support low frequencies despite the technical challenges in doing

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RF Solutions JFW IndustriesRF Solutions JFW Industriesfrom

JFW IndustriesCall 317-887-1340 Toll Free 877-887-4JFW (4539)

E-mail [email protected] Visit www.jfwindustries.com

Test Systems Programmable AttenuatorsTerminations Fixed AttenuatorsVariable Attenuators RF SwitchesPower Dividers RF Test Accessories


so. One of the chief benefits of this to the designer being that the tiny devices handle frequency bands from 800 MHz to 2.6 GHz. So in their smaller sizes, the devices equal or have better performance characteristics than similar products from the competition. Murata will gradually add new models to the range to sup-port the LTE communications standard worldwide.


Wi-Fi 6 router reference designaims to drive deploymentThe Spartan Wi-Fi router reference design is intended to the accelerate the deploy-ment of Wi-Fi 6 to retail and service pro-vider home markets, according to vendor On Semiconductor (Phoenix, Arizona). The Wi-Fi 6 router reference design files and prototypes are available now.

The router is based on the Quantenna QSR10GU-AX 8 x 8 MIMO dual-band dual concurrent Wi-Fi 6 chipset coupled

with LS1043A 1.6GHz quad-core network processor from NXP Semiconductor. OnSemi completed the acquisition of Quantenna in June 2019.

Wi-Fi 6 is intended to address the demand for 4K video streaming, online gaming and connecting smart home pro-ducts. As well as supporting the emerging Wi-Fi 6 standard the Spartan router comes with design support, including hardware design files and a software development kit, as well as industrial design files.

The design supports dual-band, dual concurrent mode with 8 x 8 MIMO at 5 GHz plus 4 x 4 MIMO at 2.4 GHz

12-stream operation. It comes with 2.5G Ethernet WAN & LAN ports, a built-in near-field communication reader for easy Wi-Fi pairing. Other features include transmit beamforming, 1024-QAM, and target wake time (TWT). The reference design includes support for third-party applications such as motion detection, channel state information (CSI) and Radio Frequency (RF) sensing.


Pre-certified IoT mesh networking modulesPre-certified Zigbee, Thread and Bluetooth wireless Gecko modules from Silicon Labs make it easier to add robust mesh networking connectivity to a wide range of IoT products.

The latest MGM210x and BGM210x Series 2 modules support leading mesh protocols and multi-protocol connectivity. They offer a one-stop wireless solution to improve mesh network performance for line-powered IoT systems ranging from

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smart LED lighting to home and indus-trial automation. Pre-certified for North America, Europe, Korea and Japan, the mesh networking modules minimize the time, cost and risk factors related to global wireless certifications. The xGM210x modules make it possible to accelerate time to market by several months, the company says. The modules are based on Silicon Labs’ Wireless Gecko Series 2 platform built around an Arm Cortex-M33 processor, best-in-class software stacks, a dedicated security core and a +125ºC temperature rating suited for harsh envi-ronmental conditions.

The Series 2 module portfolio’s initial families include the industry’s first pre-cer-tified wireless modules optimized for LED light bulbs and a versatile printed-circuit board (PCB) form-factor module designed to meet the needs of a broad range of ultra-small IoT product designs, including inside LED bulb housings.

Secure boot with root of trust and secure loader technology helps prevent malware injection and rollback to ensure authentic firmware execution and over-the-air (OTA) updates. A dedicated security core isolates the application pro-cessor and delivers fast, energy-efficient cryptographic operations with differential power analysis (DPA) countermeasures. A true random number generator (TRNG) compliant with NIST SP800-90 and AIS-31 strengthens device cryptography. A secure debug interface with lock/unlock allows authenticated access for enhanced failure analysis. The module’s Arm Cortex-M33 core integrates TrustZone technology, enabling system-wide hardware isolation for trusted software architectures.


Programmable attenuatorfor CATV DOCSIS testingThe Model 75P-223 from JFW Industries is a 75 Ohm solid-state programmable attenuator with attenuation range 0 to 63.75 dB by 0.25 dB steps. The module operates over 5 to 2150 MHz and is rated for +23 dBm of RF input power. This step

attenuator is available with 75 Ohm BNC, F or N female RF connectors. The atte-nuator has seven individually controlled attenuation steps: 0.25 dB, 0.5 dB, 1 dB, 2 dB, 4 dB, 8 dB, 16 dB and 3 2dB.

For larger RF test setups that require attenuation of multiple channels, Model 75PA-118-XX is an attenuator assembly that is available with up to 16 individually controlled attenuators. It has the same RF specifications as 75P-223, but comes in a 19 inch rack mount chassis with Ethernet and Serial connections for remote control. The 75PA-118-XX ships with a GUI test program that allows easy control of all programmable attenuators for DOCSIS attenuation fade testing.


Pocket-sized USB spectrum analyzersaddress emerging mmWave applications

Anritsu Company has expanded its Spectrum Master MS2760A ultraportable spectrum analyzer series with extended broadband frequency coverage from 9 kHz – 170 GHz, as well as introduced a new series of higher sensitivity models – the Spectrum Master MS2762A – with coverage from 6 GHz to 170 GHz for the most demanding sensitivity requirements.

This family of tablet-driven, pocket-sized analysers combines flexibility and portability with best-in-class dynamic range, allowing design and production engineers to perform basic spectrum measurements, such as channel power,

occupied bandwidth, adjacent channel power, and harmonic measurements, on CW signals up to 170 GHz. The Spectrum Master MS276xA family of ultraportable spectrum analyzers provides a full suite of cost-efficient verification tools for a growing number of emerging millime-ter-wave (mmWave) applications.

With the addition of two new Spectrum Master MS2760A models and eight intro-ductory Spectrum Master MS2762A ins-truments, the Spectrum Master MS276xA family of ultraportable spectrum analy-zers are direct-connect instruments that offer superior dynamic range of typically 108 dB at 70 GHz.

The Spectrum Master MS2762A high sensitivity models have typical DANL as low as -141 dBm from 6 GHz to 90 GHz, covering numerous bands starting from midway through the C band through the E band. Above 90 GHz, typical DANL per-formance remains superior at -136 dBm to 110 GHz; -129 dBm between 110 and 145 GHz; and -122 dBm between 145 and 170 GHz. This performance allows engineers to see more low-level signals, making the spectrum analyzers well suited for numerous applications, including radio astronomy in the D band.

The lower noise floor allows the Spectrum Master MS276xA family to conduct accurate spectrum mask tes-ting of mmWave, point-to-point radios during production. Amplitude accu-racy is typically ±1 dB, which provides engineers with greater measurement confidence and improves overall product performance. With a sweep speed of less than 24 seconds (typical, processor speed dependent) over the full 6 GHz to 170 GHz frequency range, the new models shorten test times.

The ultraportable design enables improved accuracy and sensitivity for mmWave measurements by allowing the USB spectrum analyzers to be connected directly to the device under test (DUT). This eliminates the need for calibrating external mixers or changing setups to view a different frequency band. Removing banded external mixers also simplifies test setup and conducting measurements.

Expanded OTA testing can be conduc-ted with the ultraportable spectrum analyzers, compared to bulky spectrum analyzers or power meters with limited power range. They are also 30% less than the cost of traditional mmWave bench spectrum analyzers.

Remote measurements can be made via USB extenders, making the ultrapor-table spectrum analyzers well suited for applications in which tests, such as

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antenna or path loss measurements, are conducted from a distance. Anritsu has designed the Spectrum Master MS276xA 170 GHz ultraportable spectrum analyzers with an advanced GUI that is highly res-ponsive and operates much faster, as well.

The new Spectrum Master MS276xA family provides advantages in many R&D and production applications requiring standard power and CW testing. Among the environments are automotive radar, microwave radios, and mmWave appli-cations above 110 GHz, including object detection radar, radio astronomy, high-re-solution military radars and antenna beam pattern testing.


High-performance oscilloscopeboasts bandwidth to 16 GHz

Rohde & Schwarz has expanded its high-performance RTP oscilloscope family in terms of both bandwidth, and functions for debugging and analysis.

The latest RTP134 with 13 GHz, and RTP164 with 16 GHz bandwidth, support four channels to 8 GHz, or two channels interleaved for the respective higher frequencies. For all RTP oscilloscope models, update options support band-width increases right up to 16 GHz.

The new RTP models support all functions already introduced for models up to 8 GHz, including the high acqui-sition and processing rate, and the realtime deembedding. The bandwidth of the industry-leading digital trigger is extended to 16 GHz to provide the highest precision for detecting very small and intermittent signals. The RTP triggers on realtime deembedded signals and supports all trigger types including pulse width, setup and hold, or runt, up to the full instrument bandwidth.

Ideal for debugging high-speed differential signals and available for both data acquisition and trigger functions, the new math module introduced directly after the realtime deembedding block supports addition or subtraction for any

two signals, plus signal inversion and common mode operations.

RTP users can now analyze high-speed serial signals at data rates up to 16 Gbps with the serial pattern trigger options RTP-K140/K141, which include hardware-based clock data recovery for extracting the embedded clock signal as trigger reference. The trigger supports bit patterns up to 160 bits in length, plus decoding schemes such as 8B/10B, or 128B/132B. Eye diagrams for signal integrity debug, based on the embedded clock, for at-a-glance analysis with the fastest mask test or histogram function provide results within seconds.

The RTP supports debug and com-pliance test on DRAM memory interfaces using DDR4, DDR4L, and LPDDR4 with the new option RTP-K93. It combines multiple functions such as READ/WRITE decoding, up to four DDR eye displays and automated compliance testing in line with the appropriate JEDEC standards.

The new I/Q mode option RTP-K11 converts modulated signals to I/Q data for analysis, saving acquisition memory, and extending the maximum acquisition time. The VSE vector signal explorer is the right tool for in-depth analysis of wideband radar signals, or demodulating wireless communication signals including 5G NR. The I/Q data can also be used with any suitable external tool for proprie-tary signal analysis.

The RTP now also provides all the functions required as a time domain reflection (TDR) and transmission (TDT) analysis system to characterize and debug signal paths, such as PCB traces, cables and connectors. The new option R&S RTP-K130 combines the highly symmetrical differential pulse signals from the RTP-B7 pulse source with the analog input channels to provide TDT/TDR analysis for both single-ended and differential signals. The software guides the user through setup, calibration and measurement.

No oscilloscope is complete without suitable probes. The RT-ZM family of modular probes featuring interchan-geable probing tips and instantaneous mode switching, as well as excellent RF performance, is extended to include the RT-ZM130 with 13 GHz bandwidth, and the RT-ZM160 with 16 GHz bandwidth.

The RTP high-performance oscil-loscope is the only instrument on the market that compensates for transmis-sion loss from the signal source to the oscilloscope in real time, so it remains extremely fast even with signal correc-tion activated. It also claims to be the

most compact high-performance oscil-loscope on the market, with a footprint up to 40 percent smaller than competitor products. The scope is also the quietest, due to the sophisticated cooling concept and silent fans.


GPS/GNSS, inertial fusion sensorin a rugged housing

The AsteRx Sbi module from Septentrio is a ruggedized GNSS/INS receiver that fuses high-accuracy GPS/GNSS with a high-performance inertial sensor for reliable positioning and 3D orientation (heading, pitch, roll).

Offering the flexibility of either single or dual antenna, AsteRx SBi is designed for quick and easy integration into any machine monitoring or control system. AsteRx SBi packs performance and durability into a single, compact box. Reliable location and 3D orientation data is streamed with a high update rate and constant low latency. Septentrio’s centimetre-level positioning is based on true multi-frequency, multi-constellation GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou, QZSS) technology. The company’s unique GNSS – IMU integration algorithm enables continuous positioning in environments of low satellite visibility where short GNSS outages are possible. A built-in power spectrum plot allows users to analyze interference, helping locate its source and mitigating it.


Wireless VR/AR haptic glovetargets enterprise applicationsBeBop Sensors has launched the Forte Data Glove Enterprise Edition, which is a cost-effective, high-performance wireless VR/AR haptic glove that provides real-time haptic feedback that lets users “feel” textures and surfaces.

The comfortable haptic glove enables users to also move digital objects around as if they were physical objects. Appli-cations include Virtual Reality enterprise

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training, VR medical trials/rehabilitation, robotics and drone control, VR CAD design and review, and more.

The enterprise edition of the glove is based on BeBop Sensors’ earlier Forte Wireless Data Glove. The Wireless Data Glove is an affordable wireless data glove that integrates haptics with quick and accurate sensing The BeBop Sen-sors Forte Data Glove Enterprise Edition is faster, featuring a response time of under 6 millisecond and all-day battery life. The enterprise glove also has a more comfortable design that fits the majority of hand sizes wlong with more powerful haptics for a more accurate and immer-sive experience.


Mixed mode option for digitizers and AWGs

Spectrum Instrumentation has released an optional module for its latest range of 16-bit digitizers and AWGs that adds 16 synchronous digital lines to the analogue data. The additional digital lines extend the four multi-purpose XIO lines that are already standard on these digitizers and AWG cards. This makes, in total, 20 fully programmable XIO lines that can run as synchronous digital inputs for a digitizer, synchronous digital outputs for an AWG, or asynchronous I/O lines, status lines, or even additional trigger inputs.

The digital option is a piggy-back module for the PCIe cards that occupies the panel of a second slot. It comes in two different versions, one with SMB connec-tors and one with an FX2 flat-ribbon connector. The SMB-version (M2p.xxxx-

DigSMB) offers ten connectors on the front panel plus six more that are available internally and can be used for PC-internal cross connection or external connection via an empty slot bracket. The FX2-version (M2p.xxxx-DigFX2) guarantees compa-tibility with predecessor products from Spectrum and allows parallel connection of all lines with a single connector.

These modules fit on the 16-bit digi-tizers of the M2p.59xx series, offering 20 different PCIe-cards with 1 to 8 channels and 20 to 125 MS/s. They also fit on the 16-bit AWGs of the M2p.65xx series, consisting of 8 PCIe-variants, again with 1 to 8 channels and the choice of 40 or 125 MS/s.

Digital data is stored inside the analog samples by reducing the resolution. Software drivers allow customized setups that can generate perfectly matching mixed mode solutions. The option is fully supported by the complete software development kit (SDK) which includes programming using C++, C#, VB.NET, Python, JAVA, LabVIEW or MATLAB. The SDK is included as standard with every unit. Spectrum's own software, SBench 6, also supports the major part of the option's functionality.


Integrated, multi-sensor, custom IoT platform

SmartSense by Digi (Boston, MA), which is part of IoT connectivity products and services provider Digi International (Hopkins, MN), has announced a new integrated, customizable IoT platform that provides business-critical insights via sensor-driven equipment monitoring and digital task management.

The new SmartSense IoT platform, says the company, has been developed with deep customer collaboration while combining best-in-class features from previous acquisitions. The redesigned multi-sensor monitoring and reporting platform provides users with enhanced equipment management abilities with an asset-versus-sensor focus, incorpo-

rating data from multiple sensor types into a single monitoring and reporting platform, to deliver real-time and granular information on critical business assets and equipment. In addition to housing all critical performance dashboards, alerts, and reports, SmartSense also features a completely new interface for cloud-based dashboards, offering task management, and digital checklists to support the retail, food service, and healthcare sectors.


Rugged 12V LDMOS power amplifiersfor land mobile radio

Ampleon has launched a line of 12-V laterally diffused metal oxide semiconduc-tor (LDMOS) transistors based upon its proven 9th generation of LDMOS tech-nology. The devices target commercial, public safety and defense mobile radio applications. Ceramic and plastic pac-kages are offered with a minimum longe-vity commitment of 15 years.

The first 2 products to be released are the BLP9LA25S and the BLP5LA55S. These devices are designed for 12-V nominal mobile operation over the entire VHF and UHF frequency bands from 2 to 941 MHz and deliver 25 W and 55 W res-pectively. They combine ease-of-use and extreme ruggedness without sacrificing performance as they enable >18 dB gain and >65% efficiency over the full fre-quency range. This results in fewer stages, improved stability, and simplified cooling.

Their excellent linearity makes them ideal for tetra applications and their capability to handle extreme mismatch levels over 65:1 voltage standing wave ratio (VSWR) enables highly robust handheld radios that withstand harshest environments possible. Furthermore, these broadband 12V devices are housed in compact over-molded plastic (OMP) TO270 packages..


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Powerfully Engineered SolutionsHigh-Voltage GaN for Mission Critical Applications

© 2019 Qorvo US, Inc. | QORVO is a registered trademark of Qorvo US, Inc. in the US and in other countries.

As RF requirements become more complex for mission critical applications, Qorvo® is providing RF engineers with more powerful GaN-on-SiC solutions and greater flexibility. Qorvo’s high-voltage GaN devices are designed for higher voltage to enable higher power output. Users can vary the voltage to achieve optimum system performance while maintaining high reliability.


QPD1013 QPA1027

Part Number

Frequency(GHz) Voltage

Package(mm) Description

QPD1013 DC-2.7 65 7.2x6.6 DFN 150W GaN-on-SiC HEMT

QPD1025/QPD1025L 0.96-1.215 65 NI-1230 1800W GaN-on-SiC HEMT

QPA1027 2.8-3.5 50 6x6x0.85 60W GaN-on-SiC PA