by Joel Levine, President, RFMW
MPD: Please describe what you consider to be your company’s most significant technological achievements in 2022.
RFMW continues to expand its offering of products from selective suppliers with RF/microwave expertise, and deploys a highly experienced, technically skilled sales and marketing team to assist customers with component selection and fulfillment. As such, although we don’t create technology, we are always exploring next-generation technologies, technically and commercially, that will be of interest to our customers for their future applications.
One of our core products is filters. Utilization of novel materials and material processing is enabling the development and production of planar filters. Those materials such as GaAs and Fused Silica (Glass) may not necessarily have the best Q performance, the typical measure of the ability of a material to provide low loss and high rejection, but the use of wafer fab processing technologies enables highly accurate control of geometry and excellent repeatability across a wafer and between wafers, leading to accurate, repeatable, small form factor solutions. The technologies are particularly beneficial as frequencies increase and many new solutions are coming to the market in Ka-band and beyond from suppliers such as Smiths, Marki, ED2, Knowles, and Cubic.
MPD: If your company serves the defense market, what are you working on (that you can talk about)?
SiTime’s Endura portfolio of MEMS oscillators aimed at military and aerospace applications are a great example. They are the result of years of technology innovation and improvement. The latest MEMS timing technology delivers low-noise/low-jitter clocks with unmatched resilience to environmental stresses including shock, vibration, airflow, and fast temperature transients. This enables higher reliability and higher performance products. The Endura range of ruggedized oscillators include crystal oscillators, VCXOs, and TCXOs, and provide acceleration sensitivity of 0.004ppb/g, 50 times better than quartz and can survive 30,000g shock and 70g vibration.
MPD: How is your company preparing for 5G Advanced with 3GPP Release 18?
5G Release 17 introduced exciting applications for us to support such as non-terrestrial networks from low-Earth-orbit satellites, narrowband IoT services, and MIMO improvements. Release 18 (5G Advanced) is a significant step in the evolution of 5G with the introduction of artificial intelligence and machine learning in 5G wireless networks.
Whether the RF architecture includes a sub-1 GHz remote radio head, a 3.5 GHz mMIMO antenna, or millimeter-wave beamformer, we provide our customers with the first level of technical support. We are always looking at the future skills we need and are constantly developing our skillset as these new technologies evolve. We are working closely with our suppliers such as Qorvo, Ampleon, NXP, and Renesas.