Programmable RF/FPGA partnership to develop flexible wireless platforms

June 17, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Altera and Lime Microsystems are to cooperate to “Accelerate and simplify the development of wireless networks”, aiming to produce combined programmable RF and FPGA solutions, and to combine marketing, sales, and technical support activities worldwide.

Altera and Lime Microsystems, provider of field programmable RF (radio frequency) transceivers headquartered in the UK, have entered into a Strategic Cooperation Agreement focused on jointly developing and promoting programmable solutions for a diverse range of broadband wireless markets. The agreement will result in the development of optimised field programmable radio frequency (FPRF) transceivers, digital RF and baseband solutions that will enable system designers to reduce their overall costs, lower power, shorten time-to-market, and customise designs for key wireless infrastructure, enterprise, military, industrial, test and medical applications. As part of the agreement, Altera has also made an equity investment in Lime Microsystems.

According to Ebrahim Bushehri, CEO of Lime Microsystems, “Altera's leading-edge technology, strong industry reputation, and diverse customer-base will allow us to quickly expand our business by providing complete field-programmable RF and digital solutions to our customers worldwide. As the 'Internet of Things’ and next-generation wireless networks take shape, our partnership will result in customers using programmable RF and FPGA technologies to accelerate their time-to-market and develop solutions that support existing and emerging wireless standards as well as proprietary wireless communication systems.”

Altera’s FPGAs, coupled with single-chip RF transceiver technology from Lime Microsystems supporting all mainstream global wireless communication standards, will simplify small cell deployment and enable the creation of low- cost mobile networks.

Additionally, Myriad-RF, which was founded by Lime Microsystems and is a family of open source hardware projects for the prototyping and creation of fully configurable wireless platforms, also will give developers easy access to Altera-Lime optimised reference designs, boards, and software stacks and drivers to quickly, easily and affordably build next-generation wireless systems.

Jeff Waters, senior vice president for Business Units, Altera, comments, “Lime’s technology has been adopted by companies around the world for a wide range of applications from software defined radio devices for military and emergency services to communications infrastructure, disaster relief networks, M2M technology and test/verification systems. Combining our technologies, reference designs