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Motorola updates SiGe:C process

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Motorola Semiconductor Products has enhanced its silicon germanium carbon (SiGe:C) process technology to provide longer battery life in wireless applications.

The enhancements, presented at the IEEE Bipolar/BiCMOS circuits and technology meeting, are being made to Motorola’s 0.18-micron and 0.35-micron heterojunction bipolar transistor (HBT) in a BiCMOS processes.

By optimising the way the transistor is built, power consumption may be reduced by a factor of four while obtaining a 60% improvement in peak frequency performance, according to Motorola Radio Products division VP Behrooz Abdi.

In addition, cut-off frequencies have been improved from 50GHz to 80GHz (0.35 micron BiCMOS) and 120GHz (0.18 micron BiCMOS) with a reduction in minimum noise figure from 0.9dB to 0.3dB.

This performance was realised through vertical and lateral scaling of the transistors, Abdi said.

“These significant improvements in power consumption and RF noise boost the capabilities of an already leadership technology,” Abdi continued.

“These are key metrics for the wireless mobile market, and are intended to enable our existing and future customers to offer leadership products in the mobile, wireless LAN and GPS markets with unprecedented levels of integration.”

Motorola has already introduced several products using the first-generation 0.35-micron SiGe:C process including the RF portion of its i.250 GSM/GPRS Innovative Convergence wireless platform.

The 0.18-micron process was qualified in the first quarter of 2002, with products planned for early 2003, Abdi said.

Motorola’s SiGe:C processes integrate a high performance HBT with CMOS analogue and digital functions on a single chip.

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