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RivieraWaves, CSEM claims industry's lowest Bluetooth smart sol'n

Posted: 23 Nov 2012 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Bluetooth Smart? ASIC? body area network? icyTRX? BLE software protocol stack?

RivieraWaves and CSEM have partnered to offer what they say is an ultra-low-power Bluetooth Smart integrated solution for ASIC integration. The solution comprises RivieraWaves' full qualified Bluetooth Smart protocol stack and baseband combined with the Bluetooth Smart radio from CSEM.

Bluetooth Smart (aka Bluetooth low energy) is emerging as a leading candidate to address the growing market for wireless body worn sensors for portable medical, sport and wellness sensors. Body worn sensors, also known as body area networks or BAN, nevertheless have challenging requirements including miniaturisation and autonomy.

The radio is based on the recently-announced icyTRX transceiver. The power consumption of less than 10mW in receive mode (from a 1.2V supply) offers significant improvements compared with today's standard products, and features sensitivity of -94dBm as well as a settling time as low as 5us, noted the firms. A patented architecture and integration of all RF passive devices on-chip, result in a silicon area less than 2mm2 in 90nm CMOS technology.

The BLE baseband controller is less than 65KGates, including an optional AES-CCM128 engine. The hardware accelerator handles real time tasks of the Bluetooth Smart Link Layer and takes care of a complete Bluetooth Smart event while the CPU is in sleep mode, a more energy efficient approach than a baseband controller with packet driven architecture. Running at 8MHz, peak power consumption is around 100uA in a 90nm CMOS process, while power consumption in idle modes has also been reduced to the minimum. Thanks to innovative clock gating, power gating and optimised software control, several years of battery life on a CR2032 can be achieved.

The BLE software protocol stack has low MIPs requirement and low memory foot print. It can easily be executed on a Cortus APS3 or ARM Cortex M0 running at 8MHz.

The solution is available for licensing. Samples are available, as well as a complete reference design, smart phone demonstrator and evaluation kit.

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