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FBAR duplexers enable smaller handsets with greater functionality

Posted: 16 Feb 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Gina Roos? Avago Technologies? film bulk acoustic resonator? FBAR? duplexer?

Avago's new FBAR duplexers

Boasting low insertion loss and high isolation, two key parameters of filtering devices, Avago Technologies has launched two film bulk acoustic resonator (FBAR) duplexers for handsets, PC data cards and other wireless products operating in the U.S. personal communications service (PCS) and Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) frequency bands. The duplexers also claim a significantly smaller size and higher performance compared to surface acoustic wave (SAW) and ceramic duplexers, typically used in these applications.

The ACMD-7402 and ACMD-7601 FBAR duplexers are housed in the industry's smallest, ultra-thin package with a 3.8-by-3.8mm footprint and 1.3mm height. Avago's Microcap bonded-wafer, chip-scale packaging and FBAR technology contribute to the ultra-small size.

"Because of the duplexer's small size, smaller handsets can be realized along with higher functionality. Mobile phones are becoming more sophisticated and size and power are becoming more challenging, so that's where the FBAR technology comes into play," said David Hahn, product manager for Avago's Wireless Semiconductor Division. "The FBAR duplexers are about one-ninth the size of the original duplexer so it provides a lot more room for other types of functionality to be added to the phone such as camera modules, MP3, GPS, PDA and other functionality."

In addition to size, one of the biggest issues that these duplexers address is current draw. "Since the insertion loss on the Tx side of the duplexers is reduced that means the power amplifier does not have to work as hard and does not have to draw as much current. So not only do we have more efficient PAs, the filters have very low loss which means the PAs operate more efficiently," said Gary Carr, tactical marketing manager for Avago's wireless semiconductor division.

Designed for the PCS band (1,850.5MHz to 1,909.5MHz transmit, 1930.5MHz to 1,989.5MHz receive), the ACMD-7402 duplexer replaces the larger ACMD-7401, offering a smaller 3.8-by-3.8mm footprint with a 1.3mm height and improved performance.

The ACMD-7402 enhances sensitivity and dynamic range of the PCS receiver by providing a transmit/receive frequency isolation of 45dB for the receive band and 54db for the transmit band. The maximum transmit band insertion loss of 3.5dB minimizes current drain from the power amplifier, while the maximum receive band insertion loss of 3.8dB improves receiver sensitivity.

Able to handle up to 30dBm transmit power, the FBAR duplexer supports the high output power levels need for PCS handsets without adding distortion. The operating temperature range is -30?C to 85?C.

FBAR Microcap W-CDMA duplexer for 2,100MHz
The ACMD-7601 is a high-performance duplexer for UMTS Band I frequencies (1,920MHz to 1,980MHz transmit, 2,110MHz to 2,170MHz receive). Avago said this frequency band is the most common version of the W-CDMA standard used in Europe and Asia. The ACMD-7601 offers higher performance than SAW duplexers and a smaller size with performance comparable to ceramic duplexers, said the company.

The ACMD-7601 touts to deliver a 47 percent smaller footprint and 0.4mm thinner profile than the smallest available ceramic duplexers. The device also enhances sensitivity and dynamic range of UMTS receivers while extending handset battery life by minimizing the power amplifier's current drain.

Similar to the other FBAR duplexer, the ACMD-7601 also enhances sensitivity and dynamic range, but in this case, of UMTS receivers, by providing 51dB attenuation of the transmitted signal at the receiver input and a minimum receiver noise blocking of 45dB. Maximum transmit insertion loss is 1.6dB, which minimizes current drain from the power amplifier, and insertion loss in the receive channel is a maximum of 2dB, which improves receiver sensitivity.

The ACMD-7601 handles up to 33dBm transmit power. The operating temperature range is -30?C to 85?C.

The ACMD-7402 FBAR duplexer for U.S. PCS and ACMD-7601 UMTS Band I FBAR duplexer are priced at $1.81 and $1.54 each, respectively, in quantities of 100,000. Both devices are lead free.

- Gina Roos

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