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Xilinx and TI cooperate on 5G solutions

Xilinx is working with Texas Instruments (TI) to develop scalable and adaptable digital front-end (DFE) solutions to increase the energy efficiency of lower antenna count radios.

The solutions leverage Xilinx's adaptable IP to enhance the RF performance and improve the power efficiency of indoor and outdoor radio applications. By combining Xilinx's Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC family and adaptable RF IP with the AFE7769 quad-channel RF transceiver from TI, developers will be able to address the OPEX and CAPEX concerns of large operators and private networks.

With the next generation of LTE and 5G small cells needing to address many new and evolving requirements this is creating a requirement for new functionality in the radio due to the need to support wider bandwidths and new use cases such as enhanced Mobile Broadband, massive Machine Type Communication, and Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communication. Having a radio platform that can adapt and scale to support these new use cases is seen as being critical by developers.

“Critical to the success of the radio platform is the efficiency and performance of the RF power amplifier (PA). Even for low-power small cell applications, the PA consumes over 50% of the power of a typical next-generation radio and is therefore key to driving the OPEX and CAPEX,” said Liam Madden, executive vice president and general manager, Wired and Wireless Group at Xilinx. “A scalable and adaptable DFE solution that can address current and future PA efficiency needs is key for the advancement of 5G platforms.”

Xilinx's Adaptable Digital RF IP includes specialist functionality of Crest Factor Reduction (CFR) and Digital Pre-distortion (DPD. It is currently the only solution that can support a wide range of radio bandwidths and carrier configurations. By being tightly integrated with the rest of the PHY processing implemented in the Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC device, it can handle the increasingly complex signal dynamics of multi-RAT and 5G waveforms which are challenging for standalone DPD implementations. The PA technology is also evolving quickly to address these new radio requirements with broader adoption of GaN and new architectures. Adapting to these new technologies will be key to maximizing the efficiency of the PA.

Author
Neil Tyler

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