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Silicon platform embeds Mobile WiMAX

Feb 20, 2007 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Fabless chip-vendor Redpine Signals has introduced a semiconductor platform for devices requiring Mobile WiMAX functionality. The Lite-MAX low-power mobile platform offers all features of the WiMAX Wave-2 profiles, and comes with reference drivers for Linux, Windows CE, and Windows XP, according to the company.

The Lite-MAX platform includes a baseband processor (BBP), medium access controller (MAC), analog front-end (AFE) with PLL, power management unit (PMU), a separate RF transceiver, and a choice of high-throughput SDIO, SPI, USB 2.0, and PCIe host interfaces. According to Redpines, these functions implement all the features essential for creating a mobile WiMAX subscriber unit that conforms to the IEEE 802.16e-2005 Mobile WiMAX standard.

Lite-MAX platform architecture
(Click to enlarge)

The platform “draws minimally” on the host processor's computing resources, according to Redpine. The MAC functionality features burst management, sleep modes, classification, policing, traffic shaping, security management, and link control. The company says that these functions are “uniquely carried out in one thread of the integrated multi-threaded processor, leaving the other thread for protocol processing, real-time control, and HARQ [Hybrid ARQ, a form of error control] processing, thus leading to a zero-host load architecture when a WiMAX interface is added to a mobile platform.”

Redpine CEO Venkat Mattela stated, “We have addressed the issue of power consumption through three paths — increased wireless performance, a low-power MIMO decoder, and multi-thread processing in layer 2.” LiteMAX “incorporates multiple patent-pending techniques to reduce average system power independent of any silicon geometry selected for the under-lying implementation.”

The Lite-MAX platform is available now to “strategic partners” developing Mobile WiMAX Wave 2 profile end systems, according to Redpine. Silicon samples are expected in the third quarter.

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