Los Gatos, Calif., USA: Employing a standard CMOS process, Amalfi Semiconductor’s family of dual- and quad-band transmit modules offer lower current consumption for applications such as front-end GSM/GPRS cellular handsets. The company’s AdaptiveRF architecture, which exploits the inherent scalability of bulk CMOS processes, can incorporate highly integrated derivative functions, including switches and complex filters.
Mobile-phone power amplifiers typically consume between one-third and 3.5W of power during cellular transmission, which represents 30 to 70% of the electrical current used by the phone during talk time. With the power saved by the new CMOS-based transmit module, the cell phone can support longer talk time. Thus, mobile-phone manufacturers are able to use smaller batteries.
The architecture integrates the power amplifier, controller, transmit and receive switch, filtering, and all matching components into a 28mm2 package. By integrating Amalfi’s proprietary second-generation CMOS, the transmit module can achieve high efficiency over a broad output power range. In operation, where output power is dynamic and subject to non-ideal loads, it may lead to a 40% increase in talk time, claims the company.
The modules can withstand 2kV ESD on all pins, including RF pins, which is particularly important during manufacturing. The devices also can withstand 8kV ESD on the antenna port, which further lowers BOM because no additional ESD protection is required.
The modules are targeted primarily at the high-growth entry and ultra-low-cost (ULC) product segments in the emerging BRIC markets.