Electronic Design

IR Transceivers Boost Speed And Range

Whenever we think of wireless, we automatically think of radio. But not all wireless is radio. Infrared's range is typically shorter than a radio transceiver, and line of sight is essential. Yet IR still has its place, most commonly in remote controls. It's also used for links with cell phones, PDAs, and laptop computers as well as some peripherals.

The TFBS6711 and TBF6712 fast IR (FIR) transceivers from Vishay Intertechnology make IR even more desirable. They can achieve a data rate up to 4 Mbits/s. Older original serial IR (SIR) transceivers had a typical speed of 115.2 kbits/s. A 1.152-Mbit/s option is available. So is a very fast IR (VFIR) standard that tops out at 16 Mbits/s.

The transceivers target cell phones, PDAs, laptops, and the new generation of digital cameras. Higher-resolution digital-camera photos typically take up to a minute to transfer. Yet these transceivers can transfer a 329-kbyte, 1280- by 960-pixel photo in 1.5 s, which is 25 s faster than older SIR rates. Typical range is 50 cm.

The TFBS6711 and TFBS6712 also can be used in remote control applications. These devices can even turn a cell phone or PDA into a remote control. The transceivers would have a range of up to 6.5 m, since they use an emitter with a wavelength closely matched to that of common remote-control receivers (850 nm). No external emitter is needed, saving cost and space.

Both transceivers operate from 2.7 to 3.6 V. The supply voltage determines the I/O voltage. The TFBS6712 has 1.8-V I/O, making it compatible with low-power microcontrollers. The idle current is only 1.7 mA, which is roughly half that of the next closest FIR transceiver on the market.

With dimensions of only 6 by 1.5 mm, they're the smallest IR transceivers available. They fully comply with the IrDA and IEC60825-1 standards. Both are lead-free and capable of lead-free processing, meeting RoHS 2002/95/EC and WEEE 2002/96/EC guidelines.

Samples and production quantities are available now. The price is $2 in 100,000-unit quantities.

Vishay Intertechnology Inc.

Infrared Data Association (IrDA)

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