Cambridge, UK Cambridge Consultants has sold its portfolio of 802.15.4 radio frequency (RF) integrated circuit technology to Ember Corporation of Boston which has also hired the engineering team that developed it.
The deal gives Ember exclusive rights to CCL's 802.15.4 single-chip architecture, which supports low-power radio and a license to use CCL's library of low-power radio components and a range of digital communications intellectual property. It also provides for two years of CCL's integrated circuit development services to accelerate product development.
Paired with Ember's embedded mesh networking intelligence, CCL's radio technology will create a single-chip platform for mesh networking applications such as building security, heating, cooling, lighting and ventilation; inventory control; industrial controls; and transportation infrastructure safety monitoring.
Jeff Grammer, CEO of Ember, said, “This acquisition proves our commitment to the market and to consolidating key intellectual property networking and radio in one product. Companies developing 802.15.4-based products need radio and networking technologies that interoperate seamlessly, instead of spending valuable development time stitching them together. Coupling our current partner-based development strategy via Chipcon with outstanding in-house expertise makes Ember the sound choice for these companies.”
The development team, now part of Ember, will be the core of an expanded European presence based at CCL's UK facilities in Cambridge. Ember Europe now becomes the 'fabless' silicon arm of Ember Corporation. The subsidiary also includes Ember's existing UK sales and service staff and former CCL associate director Jim Schoenenberger, who takes the position of director of business development.
Nick Horne, Ember Europe's director of semiconductor design, said, “By the middle of next year a perfect time for the market's volume ramp up we expect to have the networking and radio functionality that application developers need on a single chip.”
Ember will also port its EmberNet mesh networking platform to the CCL platform, and continue EmberNet development for next-generation products.
Nick Horne from Ember Europe (left) and Alan Richardson from Cambridge Consultants.