Search Menu
Photonics Media Photonics Buyers' Guide Photonics EDU Photonics Spectra BioPhotonics EuroPhotonics Industrial Photonics Photonics Showcase Photonics ProdSpec Photonics Handbook
More News
Email Facebook Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Comments

Innovative Silicon-Chip Design From Lucent's Bell Labs May Speed Rollout and Lower Costs of Wireless Networks
Feb 2001
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 12 -- Researchers at Lucent Technologies' Bell Labs have created the first all-silicon chips for the part of wireless networks that receives radio signals from mobile handsets. The development, announced at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference on February 7, could reduce the size and cost of wireless base stations and also could provide network operators with more installation options.
   Today's radio receiver in base stations contains 10 to 20 chips containing gallium arsenide, which is a substantially more costly semiconducting material than silicon, yet is needed to satisfy the high-performance requirements of a wireless network. For instance, the radio receiver must handle many weak signals simultaneously, then amplify and filter them before further signal processing occurs.
   "Only recently have circuit designers made silicon chips for radios that rival the performance of gallium arsenide," said Bell Labs researcher Jenshan Lin. "Our silicon-based radio receiver is the first of its kind."
   Lin and his colleagues, Olga Boric-Lubecke and Penny Gould, created a radio receiver made up of only three silicon chips -- roughly the size of a quarter -- that are 100 times smaller than the gallium arsenide-based radio. The silicon chips also are 10 to 100 times less expensive to manufacture.
   "Because base stations with a silicon-based receiver would be smaller, service providers would have greater flexibility when installing them," said Boric-Lubecke. "For instance, the base stations could be placed in less obtrusive locations, such as behind billboards or on top of utility poles. This might help speed the deployment of the mobile Internet as it continues to grow."
   The all-silicon fabrication approach also may lead to the combination of a base-station radio receiver and digital signal processor on a single chip. "This would further reduce the base-station cost and move closer to creating a system-on-a-chip solution for base-station radio receivers," Gould said.

News & Features

Terms & Conditions Privacy Policy About Us Contact Us
back to top
Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn YouTube RSS
©2019 Photonics Media, 100 West St., Pittsfield, MA, 01201 USA,

Photonics Media, Laurin Publishing
x We deliver – right to your inbox. Subscribe FREE to our newsletters.
We use cookies to improve user experience and analyze our website traffic as stated in our Privacy Policy. By using this website, you agree to the use of cookies unless you have disabled them.