Wireless Systems Design

On The Wireless Front

Boise, Idaho
Micron Technology, Inc. recently announced qualification of the 288-Mb, reduced-latency, dynamic-random-access-memory II (RLDRAM II) products, which are now available in volume production. RLDRAM II technology's fast random access, extremely high bandwidth, and high density are optimal for high-performance networks, high-end commercial graphics, and server (L3) cache applications.

Micron's RLDRAM II technology claims to offer the best combination of bandwidth, low latency, and reduced row cycle time (tRC) of 20 ns, thereby providing optimum bus-utilization efficiency. Additional advantages of the RLDRAM II technology feature set include on-die termination (ODT), multiplexed or non-multiplexed addressing, on-chip delay lock loop (DLL), common and separate I/O, programmable output impedance, and a power-efficient 1.8-V core. These features offer designers optimum flexibility. They provide a memory solution that is designed to fully optimize bus utilization—whether the data bus is unidirectional or has a balanced READ and WRITE ratio. To learn more about Micron Technology, Inc. and the RLDRAM II technology, visit the company's web site at www.micron.com.

Hudson, Massachusetts
Accumet Engineering Corp. recently announced that its commitment to high customer service, continuous improvement, and technical excellence has earned it company-wide ISO 9001:2000 certification through the certification body of TUV America, Inc. ISO 9001:2000 sets standard requirements for quality assurance in business processes—from design and development to production, installation, and servicing. ISO, the International Organization for Standardization, was developed "to facilitate the international coordination and unification of industrial standards." ISO thus enhances the international trading process by providing a uniform standard of excellence. It also helps companies overcome "technical barriers to trade" through international standardization. Receiving and maintaining ISO 9001:2000 certification requires continual process improvement aimed at achieving total customer satisfaction.

The ISO standards are based on quality-management principles surrounding customer focus, system approach to management, continual improvement, mutually beneficial supplier relationships, and more. The scope of the Quality Management System at Accumet includes the lapping, polishing, diamond sawing, and laser machining of ceramics, BeO, Silca, and other dielectric substrates for a number of industries. From the time the company receives the as-fired materials from suppliers until the fabricated substrates are shipped to their final destinations, Accumet performs every operation in a way that ensures that customers consistently receive the highest-quality product. Find out more at the company's web site: www.accumet.com.

Lenexa, Kansas
AeroComm, Inc. now offers its ConnexLink packaged transceivers with a full Watt of output power. These transceivers can talk over distances of 20 miles line of sight. Units can be set up in minutes for cable-free communication between industrial RS-232/422/485 devices, providing reliable data transmissions of up to 115.2 kbps.

The devices' flexibility and price (under $100 per unit, which is less than half the price of similarly specified modems) suit a variety of industrial and commercial applications that include: real-time inventory and change monitoring in vending and ATMs; quick information upload to electronic signs and scoreboards; timely information retrieval on kiosks and point-of-sale displays; remote data collection from industrial loggers and monitors; communication to personal and portable PCs and handheld terminals; and printing or scanning in restaurants, grocery stores, and warehouses.

ConnexLinks are small and easily portable for use in mobile and temporary settings as well as fixed installations. They can be used as direct cable replacements, requiring no special host software for communication. Optional drivers enable custom configurations based on the user's needs.

Any number of remote ConnexLinks can be set up in point-to-point or point-to-multipoint configurations. Unique networks can be co-located on site. A unique embedded protocol (RF232) manages over-the-air concerns, such as interference rejection, error detection, addressing, security, and link verification.

ConnexLinks operating in the 900-MHz frequency band are approved for use in portable applications in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and South America. To suit the global marketplace, 2.4-GHz modems are also available. Products can be purchased from AeroComm, Avnet, Mouser, and premier distributors worldwide. For more information, please visit the AeroComm web site at www.aerocomm.com.

Sunnyvale, California
Maxim Integrated Products introduces the MAX6870/MAX6871, electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM), hex/quad power-supply sequencers-supervisors with an integrated 10-b analog-to-digital converter (ADC). These programmable system-management devices provide design flexibility and high reliability in complex systems, such as those found in networking, telecommunications, storage, and base-station-equipment applications.

The MAX6870/MAX6871 combine voltage monitoring, supervisory functions, margining control, and sequencing control. These devices are programmed through an I2C interface that selects monitored voltage thresholds, sequence, and reset-timing specifications. It also sets output configurations. Internal-configuration EEPROM is used to store and update changes as necessary.

The MAX6870 features six voltage-detector inputs and eight programmable outputs. The MAX6871 features four voltage-detector inputs and five programmable outputs. All voltage detectors offer dual voltage thresholds in 10-mV increments for undervoltage, overvoltage, or dual undervoltage detection. These detectors can be configured to assert any of the outputs when any voltage is out of regulation.

The programmable outputs can be used to sequence supplies or provide system resets and interrupts with active-high or active-low logic. These outputs can be configured with open-drain, push-pull, and a charge-pump option (for driving external n-channel MOSFETs). There are eight available timeout periods ranging from 25 µs to 1600 ms. A margining enable input is available to set the outputs into a default (or disable) state.

An internal 8-channel, 10-b ADC reads back all the monitored voltages and two external inputs into its ADC registers. That ADC can be used to monitor voltage during margining or when trimming a power supply.

Other features of the MAX6870/MAX6871 include four general-purpose inputs, two watchdog timers, and a manual reset input. The devices are available in a 7-x-7-mm, QFN package. They are specified for operation over the extended temperature range (−40° to +85°C). Prices start at $6.39 for the MAX6870 and $5.83 for the MAX6871 (1000-up, FOB USA). An evaluation kit with a graphical user interface is available to speed designs. Visit www.maxim-ic.com for more information.

Herisau, Switzerland
Huber+Suhner Fiber Optics is now offering its new HSP 03 polishing machine. Designed for mass production, the HSP 03 controls the polishing rotation, rotation speed, and direction as well as the arm pressure and arm position—a cost-effective innovation for every fiber-optic assembly shop.

The HSP 03 has been designed for mass production and integrates user-friendly interface software. A liquid-crystal display allows for easy process programming (approximately 100 individual programs) and effective process management. A pivoting polishing arm guarantees optimal cleaning and foil change. All current standard connectors with 2.5-mm and 1.25-mm (SFF) ferrules as well as those featuring metal, glass, or a plastic ferrule can be polished with this polishing machine.

The HSP 03 state-of-the-art polishing machine needs no pneumatic source, allowing flexible installation. As the polishing pressure is constantly regulated, it allows for fast and efficient manufacturing changes. Via an IEEE RS-232 interface, programs can be downloaded from a PC or laptop. The HSP 03 is completely maintenance free. Performance characteristics of the polishing machine—low apex offsets and stable radii as well as consistent fiber heights—exceed international standards. For more information about Huber+Suhner Fiber Optics or the HSP 03 polishing machine, please visit www.hubersuhner.com.

Los Altos, California
True Circuits, Inc. recently announced the immediate availability of a new line of phase-locked-loop (PLL) hard macros. The macros are one-third the die size of the company's current standard PLL products. The die area of these high-performance PLL hard macros is about 0.07 mm2 in 0.13-µm-generation process technologies. This area includes dividers and other required digital support logic, supply bypass capacitance, and block isolation. Like other True Circuits PLLs, these smaller versions are very flexible with wide frequency and multiplication ranges. They offer low-jitter performance over the entire operating ranges. Each hard macro also includes the company's LockNow! Technology to dramatically improve PLL lock times.

True Circuits' smaller-size PLLs are available for immediate customer delivery. The hard macros are available for a per-use license fee with no royalty fees. The license fee includes integration support from TCI to ensure a successful customer tapeout. The deliverables include GDSII and LVS Spice netlists, behavioral and synthesis models, Library Exchange Format (LEF) files, and extensive user documentation. To learn more about True Circuits, Inc. or products like the new line of PLL macros, visit the company's web site at www.truecircuits.com.

Milpitas, California
Linear Technology Corp. announces the LTC3428—a two-phase, current-mode boost converter. It is capable of supplying 2 A at 5 V from a 3.3-V input in a 3-x-3-mm DFN package. Its input voltage range of 1.6 to 4.5 V is ideal for Li-Ion and multicell Alkaline/NiMH applications. The external parts count and size are minimized by a 1-MHz-per-phase switching frequency and a two-phase design. Two-phase operation significantly reduces peak inductor currents and capacitor ripple current, doubling the effective switching frequency and minimizing both inductor and capacitor size. External compensation allows the feedback-loop response to be optimized for a particular application.

Two 93-m(omega), 2-A, n-channel MOSFET switches allow the LTC3428 to deliver high efficiency from input voltages as low as 1.6 V. The device features an active low shutdown pin to reduce supply current to below 1 µA. It also offers internal soft-start, anti-ringing control, and thermal shutdown. The LTC3428 is available in a low-profile (0.75 mm), 10-lead (3-x-3-mm) DFN package. The LTC3428EDD is available from stock in a 3-x-3-mm DFN package. Pricing starts at $3.50 each for 1000-piece quantities. For more information, go to www.linear.com.

Davis, California
Rabbit Semiconductor is pleased to announce the release of the Ethernet Connection Development Kit. The kit provides embedded-systems designers with a very cost-effective solution to add Ethernet connectivity to new and existing systems. The Ethernet Connection Development Kit includes the following: an RCM3720 microprocessor-core module (512K Flash/256K SRAM/1 MB Serial Flash); development board with prototyping area; Dynamic C development system; complete documentation on CD-ROM; serial cable for programming and debugging; Getting Started manual; and AC adapter.

With the addition of select software modules, the low-cost RCM3720 RabbitCore becomes the hardware platform for a secure web-enabled application. The RabbitWeb module is a rapid HTTP/HTML web-development extension. It can read and write program variables remotely while eliminating complex CGI programming. It also easily creates controls, such as pull-down menus or control buttons on a Web interface. At the same time, it ensures valid input values and proper user authorization. RabbitWeb elegantly indicates input errors for easy correction. Most importantly, it yields a 10X reduction in CGI programming and debugging time.

The Secure Socket Layer (SSL) module provides HTTPS security for 8-b embedded devices using the Rabbit 3000 microprocessor. The fast processing of complex encryption algorithms (up to 120 kbps) supports HTTPS with SSL version 3 and Transport Layer Security (TLS) version 1. This module is royalty- and license-free. Existing web applications can be secured with less than 10 lines of code.

The Ethernet Connection Development Kit is available now at a price of $199. Optional software modules also are available starting at $159. To find out more, go to www.rabbitsemiconductor.com.

San Jose, California
Micrel, Inc. recently launched the MIC2591B. This dual-slot, multi-rail, hot-swap power-controller IC is produced in a space-saving, 48-pin TQFP package. The chip is aimed at next-generation mid- and high-end servers and the general-purpose, hot-plug power-control applications that comply with PCI Express. The MIC2591B features an extremely small footprint, flexible design, and enhanced performance over solutions currently available on the market. The MIC2591B is currently shipping in volume quantities. It is priced at $10.95 for 5000-piece tape-and-reel OEM quantities.

In addition to sophisticated multi-rail power control, the IC adds an on-chip, 12-channel, 8-b delta-sigma ADC to support the latest Integrated Platform Management Interface (IPMI) v1.0 industry specification. The chip also includes an SMBus interface for advanced power management and control and fault status reporting. For PCI Express power-control applications that do not require IPMI support, Micrel offers the MIC2592B. It was previously launched in 2003. For more information, please visit the company web site at www.micrel.com.

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