Xilinx, Inc. (Nasdaq: XLNX) and Wintegra, Inc. announced joint development of a 3GPP-LTE baseband targeted design platform (TDP) that significantly reduces the “bill of materials” (BOM) cost and power consumption of baseband processing as compared to conventional design approaches. Based on currently available components from both companies, the platform incorporates a high degree of flexibility and scalability, while accelerating the development of Long Term Evolution (LTE) products.
The platform combines the Xilinx(R) Virtex(R)-5 or Virtex-6 family of field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) with Wintegra’s WinPath-2 or WinPath-3 family of access packet processors and software to provide a complete digital baseband and transport solution for 4G radio standards, including both time division duplex (TDD) and frequency division duplex (FDD) modes of LTE. It delivers superior flexibility for both channel cards and network interface transport cards to address the full range of basestation (eNodeB) implementations from enterprise femtocells to multi-sector macro basestation form factors. The crucial aspect of standards compliance is addressed in collaboration with Agilent, the leading vendor of equipment for 3GPP-LTE signal generation and test validation.
“Wintegra is excited to be working with Xilinx on this important LTE program,” said Michael Phillip, senior vice president and general manager of Wireless Systems at Wintegra. “We share the common goal of reducing time to market for wireless infrastructure developers by providing open solutions that provide significant differentiation opportunities for our customers. This platform draws upon the respective strengths of each company to deliver tremendous value in terms of integration, scalability, and flexibility for LTE product development.”
Xilinx and Wintegra are demonstrating the LTE baseband TDP at the Mobile World Congress 2009 in Barcelona from February 16-19 in their respective booths (Xilinx Booth #E47/Hall 1 and Wintegra Booth #HS97/Hall 3.1).
Cost-Power Optimized Design
The key to the cost and power savings is the reduction in the number of devices in the basestation. The LTE baseband TDP combines multiple baseband and transport functions into fewer devices, including all the physical layer (PHY), media access control (MAC), and network and air interface security and encryption functions, as well as an optional Common Public Radio Interface serializer/deserializer (CPRI SERDES).
“Collaboration with Wintegra is integral to our roadmap for delivering an end-to-end LTE basestation design encompassing radio, baseband, MAC, and transport functions. Wintegra’s development team has been particularly helpful and allowed us to implement a very efficient coupling between the MAC and PHY layers, which is critical to meeting the latency requirements of LTE applications,” said Dean Westman, vice president of Communications Solutions Marketing at Xilinx.
The software-defined nature of the platform enables basestation developers to ‘future-proof’ their products for the rapidly evolving world of cellular communications. The open framework facilitates integration of custom intellectual property components enabling developers to differentiate their products. The reprogrammable and reconfigurable architecture of the platform also makes it possible for operators to undertake field software upgrades without expensive hardware improvements or replacement programs.
Additionally, the processing headroom provided by the Xilinx FPGA-based physical layer opens the road to LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) technologies and integration of more complex, differentiating baseband algorithms, such as turbo equalization, baseband PAPR, and 4×4 MIMO decode. The Wintegra processor provides all MAC functionality, all network transport capabilities, as well as embedded support for both over-the-air and network encryption standards, including PDCP, robust header compression (RoHC) and encryption standards, such as Snow3G, Kasumi, AES and IPSec.
Integrated Test and Verification
Provisions are incorporated in the platform for monitoring standards compliance at multiple points throughout system development using the Agilent VSA software. The flexibility of the VSA software enables validation of the baseband development at both a pure software model level during the design concept phase and later using digitized signals from the Xilinx baseband development board during the implementation phase. With the extensive analysis of the LTE signals provided by the software, design engineers can evaluate and troubleshoot early prototype LTE transport, MAC and PHY designs, while maintaining conformance to LTE specifications when implementing changes.
“Agilent is fully committed to addressing the complete functionality and performance test requirements that engineers need to create high-quality products for the LTE market,” said Guy Sene, vice president and general manager of Agilent’s Signal Analysis Division. “These advances in testing for both LTE Node B infrastructure and UE designs will significantly contribute to the market delivery of this innovative technology.”
The initial release of the LTE baseband TDP with prototypes using WinPath-2 silicon and Xilinx Virtex-5 FXT FPGAs is targeted for completion in May 2009. Designs based on the new WinPath-3 and Xilinx Virtex-6 devices will be available in the fourth quarter of 2009.
Xilinx is the worldwide leader in complete programmable logic solutions.
Wintegra is a leading provider of access packet processors and software for wireless and wireline infrastructure equipment. These enable the delivery of new services for the evolving communications network infrastructure.
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