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IR-UWB IC touts cm-level accuracy

Posted: 23 Apr 2013     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IR-UWB  mobile geofencing  CMOS  tranceiver 

Fabless semiconductor firm BeSpoon SAS and CEA-Leti have demonstrated an impulse radio ultra-wide-band (IR-UWB) integrated circuit that is able to measure distances within a few centimetres' accuracy. The companies boast that their demonstration has established a world-record operating range at 880m (standard regulation) and 3,641m (emergency situations).

IR-UWB is recognised as an ideal technology for indoor applications, both in terms of accuracy and robustness. It measures distances within a few centimetres' precision and is not affected by walls or people passing by.

The BeSpoon and Leti collaboration overcame two challenges sometimes associated with this technology: the difficulty integrating it on a single chip and its perceived limited operating range.

The chip jointly designed by BeSpoon and Leti features a full-blown IR-UWB CMOS-integrated transceiver that is able to perform accurate distance measurements. The stand-alone chip (RF front-end and digital base band) is designed for a straightforward integration within smartphones or set-top boxes.

Furthermore, BeSpoon has demonstrated the capability to comply with the strict regulation of IR-UWB, and yet operate up to 880m in line of sight. A world record distance measurement has been established at 3,641m, in compliance with the regulation for emergency situations.

"Indoor location is only beginning and, very soon, robustness and precision will be key to offering great new services," said Jean-Marie André, BeSpoon CEO. "Mobile geofencing is another exciting development of our technology."

"This achievement capitalizes on the UWB expertise Leti has developed over the past 12 years," said Laurent Malier, CEO of Leti. "The world record distance measurement is a major milestone in our partnership with BeSpoon, and a source of great satisfaction for the people involved in this collaboration."





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