Microwave Journal

WiMAX World Show Wrap-up

2007 event is the largest to date

October 2, 2007

Borrowing language from the television game show of Texas Hold’em otherwise known as Celebrity Poker, Motorola announced to those attending this year’s WiMAX World that it was “all in” as far as its commitment to WiMAX deployment. The feeling seemed unanimous among senior executives from Sprint (Xohm) , Clearwire, Motorola, Intel, Samsung, Nokia, Siemens and other industry-leading organizations, eager to demonstrate their level of commitment to the mobile broadband ecosystem (a term thrown around quite a bit at this conference).


Judging from the significant levels of investment being made by network service providers and their equipment providers, it looks as though there is no turning back. While the appeal of anytime-anywhere wireless is sure to be a hit with consumers, the microwave engineering community will have its hands full, overcoming the many technical obstacles standing in the way.

WiMAX World USA, now going on its fourth year, was held at the McCormick Place conference center in Chicago, IL, from Sept. 25-27. The event drew over 200 sponsors, 140+ exhibitors and over 7000 registered professionals from 125+ countries, making it the largest WiMAX and wireless/mobile broadband event ever held. Attendees from the entire wireless/mobile/broadband landscape included key decision makers from both the business and technology segments of their respective organizations. Many of those present were there to address their future business communications needs and challenges, and evaluate the world's top WiMAX/mobile broadband products and solutions with over thirty percent of those attending being system manufacturers/integrators or equipment manufacturers.

The conference kicked off with a power breakfast on Wednesday morning. The breakfast featured an opening talk on WiMAX in Action delivered by Fred Wright, senior vice president of wireless broadband networks and product management, Motorola. Conference co-chair and president Eliot Weinman from Trendsmedia (a division of Yankee Group Research) provided the conference introduction followed by additional talks on the state of the WiMAX and wireless industry by Yankee Group CSO and VP of Enabling Technologies, Berge Ayvazian and Phil Marshall, respectively.

Padmasree Warrior, chief technology officer of Motorola, gave the keynote presentation, The Experience of Wireless Broadband. Warrior is responsible for the company’s $4.1 B research and development investment. An engineer at heart with a true knack for business, Warrior's charter is to drive innovation, prioritize technology programs and accelerate creative research to commercialization. Her operational responsibility is to lead Motorola’s global team of 26,000 engineers and direct Motorola Labs, Motorola’s software, emerging early-stage businesses and the corporation’s intellectual property portfolio.

Warrior’s keynote address presented how WiMAX is uniquely positioned to deliver the market demand for broadband connectivity as either a complementary solution or primary access platform while accelerating the technology roadmap for 4G, the global impact of WiMAX installations as operators with very diverse requirements benefit from the versatility of the WiMAX technology platform. Warrior also discussed how WiMAX delivers favorable economics to address the various markets—whether for delivering new connections to voice and date or to enhance advanced networks with mobile broadband—and how an entirely new pool of players are entering the field to challenge incumbents with WiMAX networks.

An Update on Mobile WiMAX Technology, Certification and Testing panel featuring engineering, business and marketing directors from Beceem Communications, ITRI Taiwan, Comsys and AT4 Wireless looked at WiMAX technology certification and the testing necessary for reliable and interoperable solutions to be launched in the marketplace. In this session leading experts involved in certification and testing provided key insights into the processes involved and the timing for certification of WiMAX products.

In Samsung, a Partner for Mobile Broadband, Won-Pyo Hong, executive vice president and advisor of Telecommunication Systems Division, Samsung Electronics, discussed Samsung's vision for mobile WiMAX as a turning point stepping forward to 4G mobile broadband. Hong warns that the demand for mobility and broadband will be satisfied only with true mobile broadband services and the technology that can support them are realized. At the forefront of the evolution to mobile broadband, mobile WiMAX will serve as the basis for extending broadband to underserved areas and driving the Mobile Internet. The success of mobile WiMAX depends on significant support from key vendors, which are well positioned to deliver an entire end-to-end ecosystem to allow WiMAX to mobilize the Internet.

In Thursday’s Underlying WiMAX Ecosystem Technologies session, panelists discussed aligning technology flexibility and performance with market demand and economic performance. Faced with the challenge of identifying and adopting key functionality that ensures it meets market demands, panelists discussed how service providers require an adequate supply chain and enables the economic delivery of services. In this panel, technology thought leaders also discussed the key technology enhancements that are emerging on the horizon and aligned them to underlying market demand requirements for efficient and economic service delivery.

Another lively discussion for component manufacturers looking for WiMAX industry insights was the session WiMAX CPE and Device Evolution. In this session, domain experts discussed the market opportunity for specific use cases and associated devices. Examples of questions addressed included:

• What types of devices have the most immediate market opportunity?

• How will WiMAX deployments change the landscape for devices in terms of:

Vendors
Distribution
Applications

• What commonly cited WiMAX use cases hold the least promise, and why?

• What are the limitations on CPE types imposed by technical implementation challenges (e.g. MIMO)?

• What sectors—e.g. device, semiconductor, infrastructure, service delivery platforms, consumer electronics, Internet—will see the greatest impact from non-traditional players?

WiMAX Vendors Exhibit New Products

Over 140 companies were exhibiting their products and technology at this year’s WiMAX World with a number of them being very familiar names to the RF and microwave community. Representing the microwave industry were connector and cables companies; test and measurement equipment/software providers; chipset developers and manufacturers; component and front-end module manufacturers; and material providers.

WiMAX Test & Measurement Solutions

From the WiMAX World 2007 exhibition floor, Agilent Technologies Inc. showed its comprehensive set of WiMAX™ and Mobile WiMAX test solutions. A full complement of test solutions for R&D, design verification, manufacturing, protocol conformance and interoperability test, as well as network deployment and maintenance was on display.

In addition to test solutions, Agilent Advanced Design System (ADS) from the Agilent EEsof division was also on display. The ADS product offers a complete set of front-to-back simulation and layout tools as well as instrument links for RF and microwave IC design in a single, integrated design flow. ADS also includes a Mobile WiMAX Wireless Library and MIMO support.

Agilent WiMAX Test Demonstrations

Show attendees witnessed a range of new test capabilities supporting physical layer signal generation and analysis for Wave 2 system profiles—crucial to the successful deployment of Mobile WiMAX products. Specific capabilities include matrix A and matrix B signals for downlink, uplink collaborative MIMO, and creation of HARQ bursts and uplink sounding zones. Demonstrations included MIMO-fading embedded in a waveform, enabling testing of MIMO receivers without the added expense of fading hardware or software.

Agilent's E6651A Mobile WiMAX Test Set with planned Wave 2 enhancements, including MIMO downlink STC, SM and uplink collaborative MIMO measurements, and the addition of a second integrated RF source and/or analyzer was also on display. The E6651A is also at the heart of the Agilent Protocol Conformance Test solution, which adds a script-based mode for script development and for running protocol conformance test cases to verify that a product developer's implementation conforms to the WiMAX standard.

Also featured at the show was the new Agilent N8300A Wireless Networking Test Set for Mobile WiMAX applications. The N8300A is based on an architecture that integrates Agilent's state-of-the-art Vector Signal Analysis and Vector Signal Generator hardware, and features an easy-to-use front panel graphical user interface and SCPI command set.

Exhibition attendees were able to see Agilent's Mobile WiMAX drive-testing capability with the E6474A Wireless Network Optimization Platform for IEEE 802.16e-2005. This product enables WiMAX network equipment manufacturers and service providers to authenticate the actual subscriber experience in real-world, WiMAX environments. This capability allows manufacturers to develop faster and more reliable WiMAX-enabled products.

"The exceptional lineup of leading-edge, performance-based systems demonstrates our broad offering of WiMAX test solutions that are enabling a successful WiMAX marketplace deployment," said Agilent's Ron Nersesian, vice president of Agilent's Wireless Business Unit.

Anritsu Co. took the opportunity of the WiMAX World 2007 conference and exhibition to announce the creation of WiMAX Central, a one-stop reference for engineers involved in WiMAX testing and measurement. Company spokespersons claim the web site (www.us.anritsu.com/wimax) is part of the company's commitment to WiMAX technology and includes the latest news, educational documents and web seminars, as well as information on the latest WiMAX test and measurement solutions from Anritsu.

Designed for engineers responsible for selecting test equipment and software suites, setup of base stations and antennas, and ongoing maintenance of mobile and fixed WiMAX communications systems, the site is a single resource for WiMAX solutions. Anritsu has been a leader in WiMAX technology, introducing the first fixed WiMAX and mobile WiMAX handheld test instruments for deploying, installing and maintaining WiMAX networks. Anritsu has also been on the cutting edge of developing test solutions used during the design and manufacture of WiMAX components, devices and systems.

"Engineers must be sure the WiMAX equipment they are developing performs in the higher frequencies of the WiMAX spectrum. At the manufacturing stage, equipment must be tested efficiently. Once delivered and deployed, WiMAX sending and receiving equipment is subject to the usual challenges of antenna and transmission device tuning and radio interference," said Donn Mulder, general manager of Anritsu Co. "All of these scenarios call for a new generation of test tools with excellent accuracy and wideband analysis at the higher frequencies utilized by WiMAX. It also requires a keen understanding of the technology. Our WiMAX site was developed to address these considerations."

Visitors to the site can also receive a free WiMAX wall-size poster. Included on the poster are a glossary of key terms, basics of OFDM for WiMAX, WiMAX Forum Release-1 Mobile System Profiles and more. The release of the site coincided with WiMAX World, where Anritsu unveiled the site and showcased its full line of WiMAX test solutions.

Rohde & Schwarz introduced the R&S FSG spectrum analyzers combining class-leading RF performance from 9 kHz to 8 or 13.6 GHz with one-button selection of standards-compliant measurements for all wireless standards, including fixed and mobile WiMAX supporting the analysis of digitally-modulated signals in development, production and product verification environments.

This family of spectrum analyzers is available in two models, the R&S FSG8 (9 kHz to 8 GHz) and the FSG13 (9 kHz to 13.6 GHz) and features a wide demodulation bandwidth of 28 MHz, which makes it well suited for evaluation of components and equipment designed for the Long Term Evolution (LTE) enhancement to the UMTS network as well.

The instrument has an I/Q memory of 4 Msamples, which allows it to capture 25 consecutive frames in WCDMA, and hardware resamplers that allow data to be sampled at user-defined rates. RF performance includes a dynamic range of 170 dB from the instrument’s 1 dB compression point to its displayed average noise level of -145 dBm (10 Hz). Phase noise at a 640 MHz carrier frequency is -120 dBc/Hz (10 kHz offset) and -138 dBc/Hz (1 MHz offset), RF output is +25 dBm, 1-dB-compression point is +13 dBm, 3GPP ACLR is 77 dBc and 84 dBc with noise correction enabled, level uncertainty is 0.3 to 3.6 GHz, and linearity error is less than 0.1 dB. Error Vector Modulation (EVM) is an exceptional 0.7 percent or less.

The R&S FSG employs the same command set for remote operation as all spectrum analyzers from Rohde & Schwarz, so owners of these instruments can integrate the new spectrum analyzer into their test environments without additional programming. The R&S FSG provides GPIB, 10/100BaseT Ethernet and USB 2.0 interfaces, and is compatible with LXI Class C. The company’s R&S NRP Series power sensors can also be connected directly to the R&S FSG for accurate determination of absolute signal powers. Two front-panel USB 2.0 ports allow data and measurement routines to be easily imported and exported. Options for the R&S FSG include an AM/FM/PM demodulator, noise figure and phase noise measurement capabilities, a digital variable attenuator and a preamplifier.

Chip Makers Show Their WiMAX Wares

Several chip makers unveiled their platforms for future mobile WiMAX gear at WiMAX World this week including GTC, Motorola and Sequans. All released silicon targeted at the WiMAX Forum’s Wave 2 certification round, from which the first large-scale wave of commercial WiMAX deployment is expected to emerge led by Clearwire and Sprint.

Wave 2 supports both true mobility (hand-off between base stations) as well as multiple input/multiple output (MIMO) techniques, a smart antenna technology that uses multiple transmission paths to boost capacity and maintain a wireless link in highly congested, highly mobile environments.

At this show, Motorola revealed its long-awaited WiMAX chipsets for handheld devices, which it said it would incorporate into the upcoming lines of smartphone, palmtop and tablet devices it and its partners produce. Promising to produce a 3G and 4G dual-mode chipset, which would allow for roaming between cellular and WiMAX data networks, the company did not say whether the silicon would support both CDMA and GSM flavors of 3G, but it has promised to develop dual-mode EV-DO/WiMAX devices for Sprint.

Chip maker Sequans announced the names of customers in line for the new chip design including Alvarion who is using the chip for its new picocell architecture to compliment its larger macro base station portfolio; Soma Networks who will use the chipset in its FlexMAX macro base station; and Telsima who announced it would use the SQN2130 to upgrade its currently deployed fixed WiMAX base stations to mobile WiMAX. Altough being a relatively smaller vendor, Telsima has quietly racked up fixed WiMAX wins in India and other developing markets with 10,000 base stations deployed and more than 100,000 CPEs shipped.

Sequans also announced that it and PMC-Sierra have developed a complete femtocell architecture, using the Sequans 2130 baseband chip and PMC’s new radio frequency (RF) integrated circuit, announced last week. Last week, PicoChip revealed Samsung made a strategic investment in the WiMAX and 3G femtocell chip maker.

GTC announced its entry into the increasingly crowded WiMAX silicon market today, taking the tarp off a system-on-a-chip (SoC) integrating RF, media access layer and physical layer components. GTC has been developing wireless broadband chips in Korea for the launch of WiMAX’s predecessor and today marked its entry into the Wave 2 market surrounding Sprint’s US launch. GTC said it has begun sampling the 2.5 GHz chip to an unnamed beta customer and plans to begin commercial production in early 2008. GTC is joined by fellow new entrant ApaceWave, which earlier this month emerged with its own device baseband platform targeted at low-cost CPEs and PC cards.

In addition to the SoCs, two RF module makers introduced their silicon at WiMAX World: Freescale launched RF amplifiers for 2.5 GHz and 3.5 GHz, PMC-Sierra unveiled its RF integrated circuit and Analog Devices introduced an analog-to-digital baseband transceiver.

Freescale Semiconductor unveiled three high power LDMOS Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits (RFIC) that allow designers of RF power amplifiers for WiMAX base stations to reduce costs, form factors and part counts. The company claims these devices also increase performance and reliability when compared with amplifiers employing discrete RF power transistors.

The new devices extend Freescale’s portfolio of RFICs to the two primary bands utilized by WiMAX throughout the world, and are the first RFICs available in over-molded plastic packages operating in the 2.7 and 3.5 GHz WiMAX bands. The devices are the first WiMAX RFICs to leverage the cost and mechanical stability advantages of over-molded plastic packages. They are also the first such devices to integrate multiple gain stages into a single packaged device.

The MW7IC2725N and MW7IC2750N RFICs operate from 2.3 to 2.7 GHz, and the MW7IC3825N operates from 3.4 to 3.6 GHz. All three use Freescale’s seventh-generation high-voltage (HV7) LDMOS process technology, which has been deployed worldwide in both discrete field effect transistors, as well as in RFICs for wireless applications operating at 900 MHz and 2 GHz.

RF power amplifiers employed in WiMAX base stations typically require three or four stages of amplification delivered by discrete RF power transistors to achieve the desired output power. The use of RFICs has significant advantages over this traditional approach. By integrating two stages of gain in a single package, RFICs reduce the number of required individual devices. In most cases, the higher RF output power of the new RFICs allows for the elimination of the pre-driver stage in WiMAX. The devices can also be used along with discrete LDMOS FETs to produce even higher RF output power.

The RFICs further reduce cost because the capacitors, inductors and resistors required on the circuit board are integrated within the device to provide the same inter-stage impedance matching networks. This minimizes board space and reduces design complexity. System cost savings are further compounded when combined with the inherent cost savings of approximately 25 percent provided by over-molded plastic packaging versus traditional metal ceramic air-cavity packages.

Key specifications for the new Freescale RFICs are:

• MW7IC2725N: 25 W CW output power at 1 dB gain compression point (P1dB) and at 4 W average power; 28 dB gain, 17% efficiency, Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) at 5.25 MHz offset of -50 dBc in 500 kHz channel bandwidth.

• MW7IC2750N: 50 W CW output power at 1 dB gain compression point (P1dB) and at 8 W average power; 26 dB gain, 17% efficiency, Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) at 5.25 MHz offset of -49 dBc in 500 kHz channel bandwidth.

• MW7IC3825N: 25 W CW output power at 1 dB gain compression point (P1dB) and at 5 W average RF output power; 23.5 dB gain, 15% efficiency, Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) at 5.25 MHz offset of -49 dBc in 500 kHz channel bandwidth.

These devices operate from a 28 to 32 VDC supply and are extremely rugged, with the ability to handle a VSWR of 10:1 at 32 VDC while delivering their rated CW output power. Freescale’s innovative over-molded plastic packaging also have tight mechanical tolerances, enabling designers to maintain the high manufacturing yields required at WiMAX frequencies, which have been difficult to achieve when using traditional discrete devices.

Meanwhile, Analog Devices Inc., a global leader in high-performance semiconductors for signal processing applications, introduced RF-to-digital baseband transceivers designed to enable broadband connectivity in mobile communications terminals, such as cell phones, personal digital assistants (PDA) and handheld multimedia devices, using WiMAX. Building on ADI’s AD9352 and AD9353 family of integrated WiMAX transceiver components introduced in 2006, the AD9354 and AD9355 components consume less power than other transceivers in their class and are available in a 20 percent smaller package, while adding an additional receiver path for multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) support. The power and space savings of the AD9354 and AD9355 components enable manufacturers to incorporate WiMAX functionality into handsets, thumb drives or PCMCIA cards.

By integrating ADCs, DACs and real-time control and calibration loops, the transceiver components repartition the signal chain, combining all analog and RF functionality on the AD9354 or AD9355 components. This frees providers of the communications and applications processors to manufacture their digital products in the most cost-effective digital CMOS process technologies, reducing power, package size and system design complexity.

The AD9354 and AD9355 transceivers integrate two direct-conversion receivers that provide support for MIMO technology, which ensures mobile devices achieve uninterrupted WiMAX service. The direct-conversion transmitter architecture achieves state-of-the-art error vector magnitude (EVM), maximizing network throughput. The transceivers communicate with a WiMAX terminal’s baseband ASIC or FPGA using the industry standard JESD207 digital interface that Analog Devices helped to define. The data bus requires 13 pins, which is comparable to competitive products employing analog interfaces.

“By including on-chip data conversion and adding a second receiver signal chain to our transceiver architecture, Analog Devices is helping communications service providers extend WiMAX into the mobile marketplace,” said Thomas Gratzek, business director, WiMAX Transceiver Group, Analog Devices. “The AD9354 and AD9355 cover the key WiMAX frequency bands and are ideally suited for the small form factors in development.”

The AD9354 and AD9355 operate in the 2.3 to 2.7 GHz and the 3.3 to 3.7 GHz ranges and support channel bandwidths of 3.5, 4.375, 5, 7, 8.75 and 10 MHz. The devices have an excellent 3.25 dB noise figure (NF) and best-in-class linearity, both of which enable optimum real-world performance as WiMAX network traffic increases. The smart partitioning architecture enables autonomous AGC (automatic-gain control), transmit-power control (TPC) and calibration routines that dramatically reduce the RF driver development effort. Additionally, the highly accurate closed-loop power control enables 1-point factory calibration of transmit power. In contrast, other transceivers require 8 to 10 calibration points, which increase final test costs and extended development times.

From their booth at WiMAX World, PMC-Sierra showed off its own highly integrated WiMAX MIMO RF IC solutions. The PM8800 WiZIRD 2Tx/2Rx is the industry's highest density WiMAX RF IC solution, integrating full 2Tx/2Rx MIMO capability, Multi-Band support, direct-conversion ZIF RF transceiver, analog and digital converters, and an industry-standard JEDEC JESD207 compliant baseband digital interface in a single device. The dual-radio path PM8800 WiZIRD 2Tx/2Rx eliminates the need for multiple radio devices and provides programmability to support multiple frequency bands for worldwide WiMAX roaming. The device delivers up to 64QAM modulation for both Tx paths at 0 dBm output power level with an EVM rating that addresses a complete spectrum of WiMAX solutions from base station applications to mobile subscriber solutions.

The PM8800 features:

• Low-power dual-receivers and dual-transmitters;

• Dual-band transceiver covering the 2.3 to 2.7 GHz and 3.3 to 3.8 GHz spectra;

• Direct-conversion ZIF design;

• Support for 802.16e-2005 and 802.16-2004 IEEE standards;

• Configurable channel bandwidths of 3.5, 5, 7, 8.75, 10, 14 and 20 MHz;

• Integrated DCXO supports AFC with no external components;

• Flexible baseband device interface options: digital parallel I/Q interface (JEDEC JESD207) or analog I/Q;

• Integrated analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters;

• Integrated transmitter baluns; and

• Integrated hardware support for calibration.

The PM8801 WiZIRD 1Tx/2Rx offers similar functionality to the PM8800 WiZIRD 2Tx/2Rx, but integrates a single transmit and two receive branches, Multi-Band support and analog I/Q interfaces. The devices are software and hardware compatible.

WiMAX Front-end Modules and RF Hardware

Jacket Micro Devices Inc. (JMD), a worldwide supplier of integrated RF modules for high performance wireless products, was on-hand showcasing the company's M30001 Front-end Module (FEM) for WiMAX applications. The M30001 FEM is a highly integrated front end containing all active and passive components required to interface WiMAX transceivers directly to an antenna. The single 7.0 x 7.5 x 1.4 mm QFN package is ideal for mobile phone, laptop and consumer electronics applications. The small size of the M30001 allows WiMAX interfaces to be integrated along with other wireless and computing functions into small form factor products such as PCI Express, USB and handsets.

The M30001, based on the company's patented Multi-Layer Organic (MLO) technology, is a fully matched, LGA packaged module for 802.16e device applications that integrates filtering, input and output matching, power amplifier, power detector, baluns, switches and filters. The M30001 meets stringent spectral requirements of the 802.16e standard, incorporates a proven PA design, and contains circuitry that optimizes efficiency and linearity.

From the exhibition floor, SiGe Semiconductor was on-hand to discuss its plans to deliver a series of radio frequency (RF) front-end modules for WiMAX systems. The new front-end modules will combine SiGe’s proven high-performance WiMAX power amplifier architecture with the company’s expertise in multi-chip module integration to deliver small devices capable of industry-leading efficiency and performance. These features will optimize end user experience of broadband wireless access services by allowing WiMAX-enabled consumer electronics to support longer battery life and improved transmission range.

The series is scheduled to begin rolling out in early 2008 with sampling of the SE7261, a front-end module designed specifically to support the requirements of laptop computers. SiGe’s roadmap also includes chip-scale front-end modules for small handheld devices including personal digital assistants and cellular handsets, as well as higher output power modules for customer premises equipment.

Each of SiGe’s WiMAX front-end modules will incorporate all of the circuitry required between the transceiver and antenna, including the power amplifier, power detectors, filters, switches, matching and bias components. From its booth at the WiMAX World Conference, SiGe Semiconductor demonstrated the technology underlying their high-performance power amplifiers, which allow the front-end modules to deliver over 20 percent efficiency at 24 dBm output power.

“We have a proven track record delivering high-performance RF front-end solutions to the consumer markets. These new WiMAX RF front-end modules will leverage this expertise to allow manufacturers to support WiMAX services without compromising battery life,” said Darcy Poulin, senior systems engineer at SiGe Semiconductor. “In addition, providing all of the RF circuitry in a single, fully tested module simplifies design reduces bill of materials for lower cost and board area, and speeds time-to-market.”

“WiMAX is a key step in the convergence of different wireless capabilities into mobile devices for the future,” said Stefan Fulga, director of strategy, SiGe Semiconductor. “Our strategy addresses the technical challenges associated with this, including how to support WiMAX, WiFi, GNSS and cellular in portable devices while still meeting expectations for battery life, performance and price.” SiGe’s WiMAX strategy follows from the success of its Bluetooth and 802.11a/b/g/n WLAN power amplifiers, recognized for their ability to enhance data throughput and transmission range. To date, the company has shipped more than 200 million devices including power amplifiers and front-end modules, which have been integrated into laptops, handsets, PC cards and gaming systems by some of the world’s leading names in consumer electronics.

AR Modular RF announced the creation of custom amplifier modules to meet the strict linearity specs of the emerging wireless access market. The Model CMS1070 was created in 45 days to meet a client’s selected frequency band and a very demanding linearity specification.

The CMS1070 is a 3.4 to 3.7 GHz solid-state power amplifier module for the wireless broadband network. This 20 W, 43 dBm output linear power amplifier has a scaleable gain of 20 to 50 dB and is designed to meet the WiMAX 802.16d specifications. It can be modified to meet various types of OFDM or NPR requirements. AR Competitive Edge products supply a multitude of unique RF solutions to companies around the world. Company representatives were present to discuss the capabilities of this custom power amplifier module as well as the company’s global support network and “Competitive Edge” warranty.

Nitronex, an innovative developer and manufacturer of high-performance RF power transistors for the commercial and broadband wireless infrastructure markets, announced its partnership with Prescient Wireless to design a GaN-on-Si broadband Doherty power amplifier for WiMAX applications at WiMAX World. Based on Nitronex’s existing NPT25015 power transistor, the design provides 6 W of linear output power from 2.5 to 2.7 GHz while achieving >35 percent efficiency, 10 dB gain and <2.0 percent EVM with digital pre-distortion.

“The inherent low output capacitance and high efficiency of GaN-on-Si are a natural fit for the Doherty architecture. Carriers are asking for higher efficiency and broader bandwidth at the same time. It is exciting to achieve industry leading results that directly apply to their problem statement,” said Ray Crampton, marketing director at Nitronex. “We are currently collaborating with Prescient Wireless on a reference design based on our 125 W NPT25100. Preliminary results show a similar level of performance is achievable at much higher output powers.”

Typical performance numbers were taken using a mobile WiMAX waveform defined as a single carrier OFDMA 64-QAM ¾ with a 10 MHz channel bandwidth. Six W of output power is achieved with a 9.5 dB PAR at 0.01 percent probability on the CCDF during the transmit portion of a 50 percent duty cycle TTD signal.

Andrew Corp., a global leader in communications systems and products, displayed a new antenna designed to meet the needs of carriers establishing WiMAX wireless networks in the 2.5 gigahertz (2.3 to 2.7 GHz) spectrum.

The new Andrew WiMAX 2.5 GHz Antenna features Andrew’s patented Teletilt® variable electrical downtilt design. This feature enables the antenna to be adjusted remotely for temporary changes in network usage patterns. With Teletilt, the antenna’s electrical downtilt can be changed at any time to optimize network coverage and minimize site-to-site interference within the network.

“The Andrew WiMAX 2.5 GHz Antenna promises new levels of high-speed data communications for mobile and fixed users,” said Mike Guerin, vice president, Antenna and Cable Products, Andrew Corp. “Our new WiMAX 2.5 GHz model will help speed smooth deployment of these networks by helping them quickly adjust to varied urban and rural environments.”

The Andrew WiMAX 2.5 GHz antenna was designed to extend coverage for both mobile and fixed WiMAX networks and expands on Andrew’s existing 2.5 and 3.5 GHz WiMAX antenna portfolio. The new WiMAX 2.5 GHz model is a 65 degree azimuth beamwidth, dual-polarized base station antenna that provides 18 dBi of gain and up to 10 degrees of electrical downtilt to extend coverage and minimize interference.

Because the antenna can be adjusted remotely through Andrew’s Teletilt design, technicians need not physically access base stations to adjust antennas for user traffic patterns that may vary day-to-day, or even hour-to-hour. The Andrew WiMAX 2.5 GHz Antenna offers similar flexibility for control of interference. The new antenna can be configured so several are controlled remotely from one network operations center, further increasing efficiency.

Company spokespersons stated that Andrew expects strong demand for the antenna in areas such as the U.S., South America, Europe and Asia where 2.5 GHz networks are planned or are under construction.

Vectron International, a leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of Frequency Control, Sensor and Hybrid Product solutions, showcased its new C6300 Disciplined Oscillator (DO) module product along with its entire solutions portfolio. Capable of being disciplined to 1 pulse per second (PPS), Vectron's C6300 provides a high-stability frequency source that delivers the accuracy, holdover and stability required to maintain system timing in wireless base stations for WiMAX, CDMA2000, UMTS and GSM/EDGE/GPRS applications. The company also announced its smallest crystal oscillator to date. The VCS3, designed in a 3.2 x 2.5 mm hermetically sealed ceramic package, is 77 percent smaller than today's standard 7 x 5 mm packaging and provides customers in the data storage, telecommunications, networking and wireless industries with a small footprint product that can be sampled in any custom frequency in as few as 48 hours.

Designed with a variety of features and options, the C6300 DO module can easily be customized by Vectron to meet the quick-turn needs of a variety of applications. The C6300 provides a holdover of 10uSec for 24 hours, accuracy within 20 ns of reference input signal, free running stability of 0.2 ppb over operating temperature range and <5E-11/day aging. The module's form factor and performance can be customized to optimize stability, physical size and cost for a specific application.

Vectron's C6300 family is manufactured and tested to meet Vectron's stringent quality and reliability standards based on MIL-STD-202, including aging, various shock and vibration, extreme temperatures and temperature cycling.

Key features include:

• 10 degrees to +70 degrees Celsius operating temperature

• 1 pps input standard

• 1 PPS and 10 MHz output signals standard

• Multitude of oscillator options to meet a variety of holdover requirements up to and including 10 uSec for 24 hours

• Serial communications interface standard

• Product is complaint to RoHS directive and fully compatible with lead-free assembly

Vectron's VCS3 takes advantage of the industry's latest technological advances in ASIC development, leveraging a high Q crystal resonator in conjunction with a high performance synthesizer ASIC to create CMOS outputs as high as 200 MHz. The VCS3 crystal oscillator utilizes a proprietary testing and programming technology that allows samples to be shipped in as little as 48 hours and in production volumes in two weeks. The device is manufactured and tested to meet Vectron's stringent quality and reliability standards based on MIL-STD-883.

Additional WiMAX World News:

• MobileAccess released a WiMAX MIMO module for its in-building coverage platform. The in-building architecture distributes radio coverage throughout a building, backhauling a cellular signal to a remotely located base station. MobileAccess said the module can be used to add WiMAX access to its platform already installed in thousands of buildings globally.

• Alcatel-Lucent and Kyocera signed a joint development agreement to cooperate on WiMAX, pairing Alcatel’s beamforming base station architecture with Kyocera devices.

• Aperto said its 5.8 GHz PacketMAX base station is now commercially available. The base station is its first fixed WiMAX product to gain certification.