NFC controller enables tiny antennas for mobile, IoT, wearable and automotive applications

January 11, 2016 // By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Marvell has announced its full-featured, Near Field Communication (NFC) 88NF100 controller with Active Load Modulation (ALM) to support the smallest antenna sizes critical to mobile, IoT, wearable and automotive applications.

Adhering to the NFC Controller Interface (NCI) Technical Specification version 1.1, the 88NF100 provides an extended operating range and is extremely energy-efficient to enable extended battery life for power critical applications.

The 88NF100's ALM technology supports the smallest antenna sizes to enable OEMs to implement NFC capabilities into small form factor designs, making it ideal for mobile, IoT, wearable and automotive applications. The controller has extremely low power operation in polling mode to provide increased battery life for power critical applications and 3 Single Wire Protocol (SWP) interfaces to secure element (eSE) devices, ideal for secure payments.

The patented two-pin antenna interface supports a maximum distance of two meters between the chip and antenna, supporting devices where the antenna must be located far away from the chip, such as with automotive and printer applications, in addition to designs with tight space constraints, including smartphones and wearable devices. Seamlessly integrating with Marvell's Wi-Fi®, Bluetooth® and ZigBee® solutions, the 88NF100 is compliant with the NCI Technical Specification version 1.1 to leverage existing middleware and applications and supports GSMA, ISO and EMVCo industry standards.

The 88NF100 supports all data rates up to 848 kbps and operates with a low polling current of 60 uA, making it ideally suited for power critical applications. The controller's ALM technology supports smaller antennas; and allows placement of the antenna up to two meters from the 88NF100.

Providing advanced digital processing for Reader mode, the 88NF100 features optimized signal processing for better performance, enabling better reading distance in Peer-to-Peer (P2P) modes.

The controller can operate on a very low current from the battery, ensuring that mobile applications deliver the same performance level in Card Emulation (CE) mode when the phone is powered on or off.

Further, the controller boasts a LIN interface, designed to enable developers to build low cost NFC LIN nodes for the automotive industry and natively support the automotive LIN communication protocol.

www.marvell.com