PMC UniTRX(tm) Chipset For Next-Generation Macro Base Stations (Graphic: Business Wire)

PMC® (Nasdaq:PMCS), the semiconductor innovator transforming storage, optical and mobile networks, today announced the industry’s lowest power and most integrated radio transceiver chipset for macro base station designs. PMC’s new UniTRX™ chipset replaces up to 14 discrete devices, and reduces both board space and power by more than 50 percent for equivalent multi-standard base station radio designs. It addresses multi-standard macro base station performance requirements and simplifies the design of dense MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) radio units, such as active antenna systems (see figures 1-3).

The UniTRX chipset includes three integrated monolithic CMOS devices:
  • UniTX™ is a dual-transmitter RFIC for multi-standard, wideband radio designs. It supports the JESD204B interface, includes high-performance data converters and small-signal RF functions, such as analog quadrature modulators and local oscillators. The device also integrates feedback sampling channels to support digital pre-distortion (DPD) and an embedded processor for control and calibration.
  • UniRX™ is a dual-receiver RFIC for multi-standard, wideband radio designs. It supports the JESD204B interface, includes high-precision analog-to-digital converters, and small-signal RF functions, such as mixers and local oscillators. An embedded processor is included for control and calibration.
  • SyntheCLK™ is a low-phase-noise clock synthesizer with an integrated jitter attenuator. It integrates high-performance PLLs and VCO to condition and regenerate precision system clocks, and configurable low-noise outputs to distribute the clocks throughout the radio module.

“Beyond power and space benefits, the UniTRX chipset provides integrated processors to configure and monitor the transmit and receive radio chains by software,” said Tom Sun, vice president and general manager of PMC’s Broadband Wireless Division. “This allows leading wireless infrastructure equipment suppliers to develop a common radio platform for use across an ever-expanding product portfolio.”

The UniTRX chipset is designed to support wideband modules operating in the 400 MHz to 4 GHz frequency range. It addresses the performance requirements of macro base station transceivers that feature multiple standards, including MC-GSM, cdma2000®, WCDMA and LTE. High integration and low power make the chipset suitable for single-sector radio module designs and scalable for MIMO applications, such as active antenna systems. In addition to IF radio architectures, the UniTX also supports Zero-IF designs.

From a design perspective, consolidation of multiple components reduces inventory, improves system reliability, and reduces the thermal design challenges associated with radio units. The ability to operate over a wide range of frequencies and multi-standard support allow designers to build a platform that is suited to a range of applications, reducing development cost and time.

Availability and Customer Support

Key components of the UniTRX chipset are sampling now to lead customers. The devices are rated for industrial temperature operation (-40 to +85 degrees Celsius). For more information, including datasheets, application notes and reference design material, visit

About PMC

PMC (Nasdaq:PMCS) is the semiconductor innovator transforming networks that connect, move and store digital content. Building on a track record of technology leadership, the company is driving innovation across storage, optical and mobile networks. PMC’s highly integrated solutions increase performance and enable next-generation services to accelerate the network transformation. For more information, visit Follow PMC on Twitter, LinkedIn and RSS.


Figure 1: UniTRX in 2x2 LTE radio unit

Figure 2: UniTRX reduces power and area in macro, RRH and active antenna designs

Figure 3: Reduction of power, area and components with UniTRX

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© Copyright PMC-Sierra, Inc. 2012. All rights reserved. PMC and PMC-SIERRA are registered trademarks of PMC-Sierra, Inc. in the United States and other countries, PMCS, UniTRX, UniTX, UniRX and SyntheCLK are trademarks of PMC-Sierra, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective owners. PMC is the corporate brand of PMC-Sierra, Inc.

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