Tiny antenna-sharing IC supports multiple cellular connections

April 12, 2012 // By Julien Happich
STMicroelectronics has unveiled a highly miniaturized IC enabling smartphones to run multiple RF communication links through a shared antenna.

Using its advanced packaging expertise, STMicroelectronics has created a tiny 1.14mm 2 antenna-sharing IC, the DIP1524, capable of delivering high signal strength to several RF receivers simultaneously. Achieving such an efficient antenna connection is especially important for handset GPS functionality, since the received satellite signals are relatively weak. Users of smartphones featuring the DIP1524 will experience advantages including faster GPS startup time (time to first fix), more accurate position detection and, as a result, even more reliable location-based services that benefit from strong connections to several satellites.

The DIP1524 diplexer uses the company's Integrated Passive Device (IPD) technology fabricated on a glass substrate to minimize insertion losses compared to the ceramic substrates used by other manufacturers. Its flip-chip package has a footprint the same size as the chip itself, thereby occupying 65% less pc-board area than competing devices in conventional packages with a total footprint larger than 3mm2. The DIP1524 enables handset designers to connect receivers for GPS/GLONASS satellites, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and LTE band 7 to the same antenna.

The chip features a GPS insertion loss of 0.65 dB (maximum), a GLONASS insertion loss of 0.75 dB (maximum), a Zero performance drift and a high channel isolation with no value dispersion between components. The DIP1524-01D3 is sampling now in a 4-bump flip-chip package.

Visit STMicroelectronics at www.st.com