Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Elite RF Platform Simplifies Timing Architecture In Wireless Infrastructure

By Sharad Bhowmick

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Elite RF Super-TCXO is a class of MEMS-based temperature-controlled oscillators for 5G radios. The device is built to withstand extreme environments.

Elite RF Super-TCXO (Source: SiTime)

SiTime Corporation’s Elite RF Super-TCXO is a MEMS-based temperature-controlled oscillator. The new precision timing platform, EliteRF, simplifies timing architecture in wireless infrastructure. The Elite RF Super-TCXO enables higher bandwidth and lower latency which is critical to future 5G and satellite communications deployment. The Elite RF Super-TCXO can replace the Mini-OCXOs, that have been used for Satcom radio applications. The Elite RF Super-TCXO are more rugged, consumes lower power and require lower external components, thus, making the designing task cheaper and easier.

The timing platform is purpose-built to withstand extreme environments in which 5G radios are deployed while delivering phase noise, accuracy, and resilience in a single, highly integrated device. These devices also meet the stringent performance requirements specified by the IEEE 1588v2 timing synchronization protocol. The module is suitable for applications such as infrastructure radios in small cells, remote radio units (RRUs), microwave backhaul, and SATCOM equipment.

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According to the company, the Elite RF Super-TCXO is an entirely new class of MEMS-based temperature-controlled oscillators. Furthermore, in the past, mini-OCXOs have been the primary timing reference for 5G and SATCOM radios. Although these Mini-OCXOs offered the required stability over changing temperatures and had decent accuracy, these devices have a high power consumption and are notoriously unreliable in harsh environments. Moreover, they consume excessive board space and require additional components, such as jitter cleaners and VCXOs for generating RF-capable clocks.

“To enable new services, radios are expected to deliver 10x the bandwidth of previous generations with significantly lower latency,” said Piyush Sevalia, executive VP of marketing, SiTime. “To achieve these performance goals, next-gen radios must be deployed closer to the user, and all nodes in the network must be time-synchronized. Past radio architectures used separate timing devices for the radio and for synchronization. The SiTime Elite RF platform integrates these two clocking functions, simplifying the radio timing architecture and delivering on the promise of 5G bandwidth and coverage.”

Features of Elite RF Super-TCXO Family:
• 1 to 220 MHz and frequency output
• ±100 ppb stability over temperature
• -40 °C to +105 °C operating temperature range
• ±0.9 ppb/°C stability over temperature slope
• ±400 ppm digital control with ±0.05 ppt (parts per trillion) resolution
• 100 fs typical integrated phase jitter (19.2 MHz, 12 kHz to 20 MHz integration range)
• 0.3 ppb/day typical daily aging
• 144 mW power consumption at 1.8V
• 5.0 mm x 3.5 mm ceramic package


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