A reduced bill of materials is one of the key benefits of the STW81100, a multi-band RF synthesizer developed by STMicroelectronics. The part, manufactured in BiCMOS SiGe technology, contains embedded voltage-controlled oscillators (VCOs ). The synthesizer is aimed at wireless communication and test equipment systems. The company claims that it's a low-cost single-chip alternative to discrete PLL and VCO solutions which typically require two chips and are more bulky and expensive. In addition, the device leads to an indirect cost reduction as a one-chip approach increases reliability, reduces board space, and reduces the number of external discrete components.
The STW81100 includes an Integer-N frequency synthesizer and two fully integrated VCOs which feature low phase noise performance and a noise floor of -153 dBc/Hz. The combination of wide frequency-range VCOs (thanks to center-frequency calibration over 32 sub-bands) and multiple output options (direct output, divided by 2 or 4) allows the synthesizer to cover the frequency bands of 820 to 1100 MHz, 1640 to 2200 MHz, and 3280 to 4400 MHz. The device is supplied in a 28-lead exposed QFN lead-free package. Sample devices and evaluation boards are available now. Volume production will start soon. The price is set at $3 in lots of 10,000 units. It's also available as an IP cell. A datasheet is available at www.st.com/stonline/books/ascii/docs/11297.htm.