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Silicon Labs Claims Highest Performance Embedded Wireless Solution

23rd February 2009
ES Admin
Silicon Laboratories has announced a high performance embedded wireless solution, the EZRadioPRO family and C8051F9xx series low-power MCU. The EZRadioPRO embedded wireless radio family delivers the highest single-chip output power (up to +20 dBm) and industry leading sensitivity (-118 dBm), providing a best-in-class link budget that substantially increases communication range while minimizing power consumption.
High performance coupled with comprehensive built-in system features, such as packet handling and antenna diversity, allows the devices to achieve the lowest overall system cost for frequencies from 240 to 960 MHz. When paired with Silicon Labs’ low-power, low-voltage C8051F9xx MCU family, customers can develop embedded wireless solutions that operate from a single cell battery, reducing cost and size in consumer and industrial applications such as remote meter reading, home security, remote keyless entry and building automation.

Most embedded wireless applications require a high performance RF transceiver, receiver or transmitter for data communication with an embedded MCU for system control and data processing. These applications demand the best possible reach, robust performance and the longest possible battery life. Often, these types of applications are implemented in noisy environments that can degrade the wireless performance. By maximizing the wireless link budget, including advanced radio features like antenna diversity and implementing key radio features digitally using an embedded DSP, the highest performance can be achieved under the most difficult operating environments. Silicon Laboratories’ low-cost wireless solution includes:

The EZRadioPRO high-performance transceiver, receiver and transmitter, which integrate embedded antenna diversity capabilities on chip to automatically choose the most effective antenna, improving performance. In addition the devices support built-in packet handling, wake-up timers, temperature sensing and low-battery detection. Competing solutions depend on an external controller to offer similar functionally, increasing cost and software complexity while negatively impacting battery life.

The C8051F9xx family of low-voltage, low-power MCUs, capable of operating down to 0.9 V, integrates a dc-dc controller able to supply up to 65 mW of power to the MCU and EZRadioPRO device, enabling a complete single-cell battery powered radio/MCU solution.

The EZRadioPRO family’s built-in, high-performance low-noise amplifier (LNA) and power amplifier (PA) eliminate the need for expensive external components used in many demanding applications, resulting in a BOM savings of approximately $0.50 to $1.00 USD. EZRadioPRO gives customers the flexibility to change key radio parameters via register settings, enabling an optimal tradeoff between performance and battery life customized for their application and environment.

“By combining high performance and low power, EZRadioPRO and the C8051F9xx meet all the demands of customers employing embedded wireless into their applications,” said Rafi Fried, general manager of wireless products for Silicon Laboratories. “Our embedded wireless approach vastly increases performance and simplifies the customer’s design, while improving reliability and extending battery life.”

The EZRadioPRO and the C8051F9xx product families are supported by Silicon Labs’ industry-leading tools to help speed design and accelerate time to market. At no cost to the customer, a complete professional wireless development suite (WDS) is provided that includes reference code, schematics and Gerbers as wells as an easy-to-use GUI to help designers configure the radio for quick lab evaluations. The WDS GUI also outputs a radio configuration file including all required radio register settings for use with the MCU IDE.

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