LONDON Cambridge Consultants is working for picoChip to develop software-defined radio reference designs for the mobile WiMAX (802.16e) market, using the picoArray DSP device.
Doug Pulley, CTO at picoChip (Bath, England), said, “When we started our search for a design partner, we were looking for a team with the know-how to do it right first time, and we recognised this quality in Cambridge Consultants' engineers, who understood the design issues intimately.”
The reference designs will be delivered in early 2006 and picoChip will be providing these to lead customers for trials, and testing them at the first 802.16e Plugfest next June, to verify interoperability and performance.
The designs will provide the air interfaces required for both base station and mobile station equipment in WiMAX 802.16e wireless networks, but in forms which are inherently software-upgradeable.
The software-defined nature of the designs will allow OEMs to make substantial changes to 802.16e equipment in the field, by means of a software patch. This substantially reduces the risk associated with upgrades to the specification – which are likely to be introduced as field experience with mobile WiMAX is gained.
Manufacturers will also be able extend system functionality, for example to include MIMO or smart antenna technology.