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MEMS Differential Oscillators: A Competitive Advantage in Communications Systems
 

MEMS Differential Oscillators: A Competitive Advantage in Communications Systems

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From processors to oscillators, performance improvement at the component level enables improvement at the system level. This translates to more features, higher performance and increased speed for end ...

From processors to oscillators, performance improvement at the component level enables improvement at the system level. This translates to more features, higher performance and increased speed for end users of both consumer products and enterprise systems.

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    MEMS Differential Oscillators: A Competitive Advantage in Communications Systems MEMS Differential Oscillators: A Competitive Advantage in Communications Systems Document Transcript

    • MEMS Differential Oscillators: A Competitive Advantage in Communications SystemsFrom processors to oscillators, performance improvement at the component level enables improvement at the systemlevel. This translates to more features, higher performance and increased speed for end users of both consumer productsand enterprise systems. The need for higher speed in communications systems, such as equipment used in server farmsand 4G base stations, is driven by the ever increasing demand for more bandwidth. Accelerating growth in high-speedserial data transmission in networking, storage and telecom environments is driving innovation through use of newtechnologies such as those used in new frequency control solutions. High performance networking and communicationssystems require a high quality stable timing component that can support high frequencies with low noise.As a timing reference, differential oscillators play a key role in high-performance, high-speed systems. In contrast tosingle-ended oscillators that support lower frequencies with a single signal, differential oscillators typically supportfrequencies above 100 MHz. Differential oscillators use two signals of opposite phases. This two-wire architecturereduces electrical interference because noise affects both wires equally and is canceled at the receiver. In addition toeliminating common mode noise coupling, differential oscillators are less sensitive to power supply noise (expressed asPSRR or PSNS) and they help reduce electromagnetic interference (EMI).In communications applications, timing devices must provide good signal integrity over a long period and a widetemperature range. This requires excellent frequency stability and low drift (aging) specifications. Today’s differentialoscillators are based on three main technologies: silicon MEMS, overtone quartz crystal or surface acoustic wave (SAW)quartz crystal. Each of these technologies offers different performance parameters that affect system timing margin.Among these three technologies, SAW-based oscillators have the worst frequency stability with ±50 ppm overtemperature and one-year aging of ±5-10 ppm. Overtone crystal oscillators have better frequency stability at ±20 ppm andone-year aging of ±1-3 ppm, but they only support frequencies up to 200 MHz. Overtone oscillators also have start-upissues and are less reliable than SAW oscillators due to their complexity. Silicon MEMS-based oscillators overcome thesedeficiencies. MEMS-based differential oscillators, with frequencies up to 800 MHz, offer ±10 ppm frequency stabilityacross the industrial temperature range and ±1 ppm one-year aging – all with less than 1 ps integrated RMS phase jitter(12 kHz to 20 MHz). MEMS differential oscillators also have the lowest power consumption and much higher reliability.MEMS oscillators offer other compelling advantages with a programmable all-silicon platform. System designers canselect the optimal combination of features for their application when using MEMS-based devices and they can receivecustom-configured product within a very short timeframe. For example, the frequency can be easily programmed with sixdecimal places of accuracy. Any combination of signal type (LVPECL, LVDS, HCSL or CML), operating voltages (2.5-3.3V) and package options (5.0 x 3.2 mm or 7.0 x 5.0 mm) can be selected to give designers the exact solution tooptimize their system. MEMS-based differential oscillators are also available with special functions such as spreadspectrum control, voltage control (VCXO) and temperature control (VCTCXO).Increased performance in networking and communications systems is enabled by improvements realized at thecomponent level. New technologies, such as MEMS-based differential oscillators bring technology advances that were notpossible before. With industry standard footprints, MEMS oscillators can replace quartz-based oscillators and allowdesigners to quickly and easily upgrade their systems without changing the board layout.Learn more about : clock generator