20 June 2011

SWID selects TowerJazz as strategic foundry for RFICs

Specialty foundry TowerJazz (which has two fabrication plants at Tower Semiconductor Ltd in Migdal Haemek, Israel plus one at its US subsidiary Jazz Semiconductor in Newport Beach, CA) says that fabless IC design firm Southwest Integrated Circuit Design Co Ltd (SWID) of Shenzhen, China (which provides ICs and other electronic circuits for mobile communication, modules and systems, circuit design, circuit production, circuit test, and circuit marketing) has selected its proven silicon germanium (SiGe) BiCMOS process technologies to develop its latest RF ICs. SWID is announcing availability of an integrated walkie-talkie chip (XN239) and a low-noise amplifier (XN255) to complement its previously announced fully integrated RF tuner.

SWID’s XN239 is manufactured using TowerJazz’s SBC35 process and is a multi-functional transceiver chip. It includes a built-in power detector as well as an MPU to perform functional control through a serial interface that can significantly reduce the need for other discrete components and reduce the total bill-of-materials (BOM) cost of the walkie-talkie. XN239 realizes a good noise figure for the transmission and receiver design of audio-frequency walkie-talkies, it is claimed; its radio frequency is 460MHz; its first-order IF (intermediate frequency) is 21.7MHz; and its 2nd IF is 450kHz or 455kHz, which can support dual-frequency conversion.

SWID’s XN255 is fabricated using TowerJazz’s SBC18 process and is a low-noise amplifier (LNA) for GPS applications. SiGe BiCMOS technology enables both the high gain and low noise required for sensitive GPS receivers. With XN255 placed at the front-end of a GPS receiver, it can increase the sensitivity of the signal receiver so the GPS can be used in many different environments. XN255 can be operated with a 2.7–3.3V voltage source, and its current consumption is only 3mA, with an idle current of less than 10µA which allows very low power consumption.

“They offer very reliable technologies, extremely accurate models and excellent technical support, which enables us to achieve first-time silicon success and to reduce our design cycle time,” comments SWID’s president Lin Fan about TowerJazz. “We look forward to continuing to work together on several other products,” he adds.

“SWID leverages our SiGe BiCMOS process to enable better noise performance over standard CMOS and better integration of RF functions,” says Dr Marco Racanelli, senior VP & general manager, RF and High Performance Analog Business Group, TowerJazz. “SWID is a very important customer and an RF communication applications leader as well as a significant company within the Chinese region, and we will continue to support them as their strategic foundry of choice for SiGe solutions.”

TowerJazz’s 0.18 and 0.35µm SiGe BiCMOS process comes with options including deep trench, ultra-thick metal, deep N-Well, and MIM caps ranging from 1fF/µm2 to 5.6fF/µm2, as well as a complementary process allowing for a vertical PNP on NPN. Noise and power performance is competitive with gallium arsenide while offering as much as 40% lower die cost, it is claimed.

Tags: TowerJazz SiGe BiCMOS

Visit: www.swid.com.cn

Visit: www.towerjazz.com

Visit us at Linked In

See Latest IssueRSS Feed