RF transceiver simplifies wireless design - Embedded.com

RF transceiver simplifies wireless design


If you are a design engineer interested in ways to accelerate your development cycle for Wireless Radio system technology designs and need the flexibility to develop different RF platforms with a minimum re-design effort by using one versatile, scalable platform with easily adaptable software flexibility as well, then read on.

There are an incredible estimated number of 8 billion hyper-connected people worldwide using over 100 billion connected devices and growing at a fast rate. We will need to somehow develop wired/wireless electronic solutions that can deliver more bandwidth, enhanced security, lower power and lower latency with lower cost.

I recently became aware of a new, innovative and highly integrated RF transceiver solution called RadioVerse. Analog Devices has raised the bar in versatile system design with this new ecosystem. This solution enables design engineers to have access to a new set of tools to develop a complete Wireless System Design using a unique integrated, wideband RF and low power transceiver technology. This robust design environment also lends market-specific technical expertise to move breadboard radio designs from concept to creation more quickly than I have ever seen. I spoke to Suja Ramnath, GM of ADI’s RF transceiver business; Nitin Sharma, senior director, marketing and applications, RF transceivers and Kim Boucher, marketing manager, RF transceivers to gather details about this solution.

The new transceiver technology will enable a reduction in the radio size, weight and power (SWaP), and as an added feature, the design environment offers board support packages, software and tools to help designers to simplify and accelerate radio development across a range of applications including wireless infrastructure, aerospace and defense electronics, and electronic test and measurement.

RadioVerse redefines radio design at the circuit, architecture, system and software levels to simplify integration and enable faster time-to-market.

Along with this new technology and design ecosystem the AD9371 was also introduced as the latest addition to ADI’s integrated wideband RF transceiver product line.  This device is a highly versatile, carrier-grade, system-on-chip radio solution that achieves a wide RF tuning range of 300 MHz to 6 GHz, while enabling transceiver large signal bandwidths of 100-MHz, observation receiver and transmit synthesis bandwidths up to 250 MHz, fully integrated LO and clocking functions, and highly advanced on-chip calibration and correction algorithms.

All this with a power consumption of less than 5W under standard operating conditions. It can reduce board footprint by as many as 20 discrete radio components and can be used as a common design platform across multiple applications and standards. The system supports a wide range of standards and applications, and enables designers to reduce component and development costs by reducing their need for multiple design variants. Just look at the high level of integration in this IC in Figure 1. 

Figure 1: The single, integrated Wideband RF Transceiver AD9371 (Image courtesy of Analog Devices)

Other key features I like are a 6Gbps JESD204B interface, two independent receiver and two independent transmit paths. On the Digital and software front there are wideband, tracking correction algorithms, an auxiliary ADC, DAC and GPIO and API support. Plus, the addition of integrating the Observation and Sniffer receivers is an excellent choice.

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