2 February 2010


Black Sand acquires CMOS PA patent portfolio

Fabless semiconductor firm Black Sand Technologies Inc of Austin, TX, USA, which was founded in 2005 and specializes in power amplifier technology for wireless applications, says that it has acquired a patent portfolio related to CMOS power amplifiers (PAs) from Silicon Laboratories. The US and international patents include claims and methods related to power amplifier architectures and implementations that can be used in a CMOS process.

Last September, Black Sand unveiled what it claimed was the first 3G CMOS RF power amplifier. “The acquired IP represents important technology for Black Sand, significantly advancing our position,” says CEO John Diehl. “When combined with our internally developed IP, these foundational patents give us a unique combination of outstanding technology and substantial IP.”

Black Sand’s RF PA products are targeted at mobile phones and other 3G wireless devices such as datacards and netbooks. Mobile phones and wireless products currently use power amplifiers based on gallium arsenide but the firm reckons that replacing GaAs with CMOS can improve manufacturing yield, performance, cost, battery life, and call quality.

See related item:

Black Sand raises $10m in Series B funding

Search: Black Sand Technologies CMOS RF PAs