TowerJazz, the global specialty foundry leader, today announced significant customer engagements and market share gain in the fast growing Front-End Module (FEM) market, providing its Silicon Radio Platform (SRP) for smartphones and other mobile systems. TowerJazz’s SRP allows integration of the radio in mobile devices including components such as antenna switches, antenna tuners, diversity switches, controllers, low-noise-amplifiers (LNAs) and power amplifiers (PAs) eliminating the need for expensive discrete GaAs devices. The SRP includes a state of the art RF SOI technology and a SiGe PA technology together with 0.18um RF CMOS for integration of control and MIPI (Mobile Industry Processor Interface) interface functions.
TowerJazz’s latest RF SOI technology offers the industry’s best figure of merit for antenna switch and antenna tuning applications with Ron-Coff of only 217fs. The technology is quickly replacing GaAs implementations and has already been adopted by multiple customers worldwide with over 50 separate designs taped-in with initial designs ramping to production.
TowerJazz’s Silicon Germanium (SiGe) PA process is built in 0.18um technology to enable efficient integration of power amplifier, controller, and MIPI interface and also includes a through-silicon-via to deliver performance comparable to that of GaAs at only 40% of the cost while enabling new tunable features and affording levels of integration not otherwise possible.
The economic and performance driven move from GaAs technologies to Si and SiGe technologies is expected to more than triple the portion of the FEM market available to TowerJazz over the next several years, and TowerJazz is well poised to manufacture a major portion of the devices that will serve this fast growing, multi-billion dollar market. According to a 2012 report by Mobile Experts, LLC, the handset front-end market is expected to double to $10 billion and the number of RF paths is expected to grow to 20 billion by 2017. The report further indicates that multi-mode, multi-band handsets and MIMO (multiple-input and multiple-output) will drive staggering growth in the number of RF components shipped for mobile devices.