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15 November 2012

Skyworks launches high-efficiency front-ends to increase range for water and gas metering

Skyworks Solutions Inc of Woburn, MA, USA (which manufactures analog and mixed-signal semiconductors) has launched a family of highly efficient front-end solutions for smart water and gas metering applications. The front-end solutions enable significant size and cost reduction. In addition, many of them allow for plug-and-play functionality, reducing the design time for new products. The firm reckons that, to date, its solutions are being used by 40 tier-one utility and smart energy providers throughout Europe.

“Skyworks’ newest front-end solutions offer increased range, high power efficiency and robust design flexibility – three critical features in smart metering applications,” says Liam K. Griffin, executive VP & general manager of high-performance analog. “Skyworks is delighted to be delivering highly integrated modules that are enabling smart utility grids to improve their capacity and successfully manage customer demand, while allowing consumers to monitor and use energy and water more resourcefully,” he adds.

According to the GSM Association, the utilities sector is set to invest $200bn in smart grids worldwide through 2015 as the need to provide growing populations with enough water and energy – without causing potentially catastrophic damage to the environment – is one of the biggest challenges facing governments and societies worldwide. Systematically using embedded mobile connectivity to create smart utility grids and smart energy environments can improve suppliers’ ability to effectively manage demand and enable consumers and businesses to use resources more efficiently.

Skyworks’ SKY65367-11 and SKY66100-11 are 169-170MHz transmit/receive front-end modules (FEM) that are usable in unlicensed bands in Europe. The FEMs include a power amplifier (PA) capable of more than +24dBm (SKY66100-11) and +30dBm (SKY65367-11) of transmit output power (VCC = 3.6V) at more than 43% power-added efficiency (SKY65367-11) and more than 50% PAE (SKY66100-11) for the module. For current-sensitive applications, the 16-pin, 4mm x 4mm multi-chip module PA can be bypassed to save battery current. All functionality can be controlled by a three-wire interface. The highly manufacturable, cost-effective FEMs can also be placed in deep sleep mode to further increase battery life. The receive chain consists of a low-loss single-pole, triple-throw (SP3T) switch, providing an insertion loss of about 0.4dB.

Skyworks is exhibiting its products in Hall A, Booth 517 at the Electronica 2012 trade show in Munich, Germany (13–16 November).

Tags: Skyworks


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