Wireless Systems Design

802.11a/b/g And 802.11g Chip Sets Sample

Engineering samples for the WiND502 multimode IEEE 802.11a/b/g and the WiND512 IEEE 802.11g chip sets are now available. Both products are two-chip solutions with a common MAC/baseband processor, called the EN202, and a different but pin-compatible RF chip.

The WiND502 employs the dual-band EN303 RF chip for IEEE 802.11a/b/g operation. The WiND512 device, on the other hand, uses the EN313 RF chip for IEEE 802.11g operation. Both solutions share common CardBus, MiniPCI, and other reference designs. Each chip set also relies on the same production utility software, host driver software, and chip-set firmware. This allows customers to further minimize both development time and the cost of multiple technologies for different applications.

The WiND502 and WiND512 chip-set solutions are characterized by a comprehensive wireless-LAN security feature set that includes both 64- and 128-b WEP encryption. They also support the WiFi Protected Access (WPA) enhanced security initiative. This initiative is based on the IEEE TKIP protocol, IEEE 802.1x, and Radius authentication. Conformance with worldwide radio regulations is supported using dynamic frequency selection (DFS) and transmission power control (TPC) through IEEE 802.11h compatibility. Both chip sets even account for the developing IEEE 802.11e QoS standard by enabling firmware upgrade support for all of its currently discussed options.

The WiND chip sets were designed to provide superior performance and radio robustness without compromising cost. Each employs a patented Zero Loss Front-End technology, advanced modem, and RF design. They provide increased coverage range through an increased receiver sensitivity of at least 5 dB more than required by the IEEE standards. A patented EZ-IF RF design is utilized to provide excellent adjacent- and alternate-radio-channel interference rejection.

Because the chip sets were manufactured to be low in cost, many typical external BOM components are integrated on chip. Examples include LNAs, RF switches, baseband filters, and VCOs. Loopback and calibration blocks are even built into the modem and RF silicon. The result is very short production-line testing time of WLAN products based on either of the chip sets.

As an added benefit, the WiND502 chip set is designed to work on all allocated frequencies in the 2.4-GHz and 5-GHz bands worldwide. This includes the recently proposed 5-GHz-band allocations in Japan. Such a radio design approach ensures that WiND502-enabled network-interface-card (NIC) users can access any type of Wi-Fi wireless network anywhere in the world with absolutely no need for additional hardware or software.

Both the WiND502 and WiND512 chip sets are now sampling for alpha customers in Taiwan and Japan. Mass production is targeted for June. Development kits will also be provided in support of the user's development process. These kits will include chip-set samples and development systems, as well as all necessary datasheets for each chip set and external BOM components. Hardware reference designs and host-software-driver source code are provided as well. Using the chip sets, a full-test utility software package will enable the easy production testing of cards.

Envara, Inc.
275 Shoreline Dr., Suite 600, Redwood City, CA 94065; (650) 591-5120, FAX: (650) 551-0601, www.envara.com.

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