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Flip-chip memory card transceiver targets handsets

Posted: 06 Nov 2007     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:memory cards  card interface  handheld devices 


STMicroelectronics has announced a tiny, highly integrated chip that provides five essential functions required by memory card interfaces in mobile phones, GPS navigation devices, digital cameras and a broad range of other consumer and industrial products that use removable SD protocol cards. Produced using the company's Integrated Passive and Active Devices (IPAD) technology, the new flip-chip EMIF06-SD02F3 memory-card transceiver integrates signal conditioning, bidirectional level shifting, ESD protection, EMI filtering and a 2.9V voltage regulator.

Integration of these circuits into a single monolithic chip increases system reliability and saves more than 75 per cent of the board area required by a typical discrete solution. The EMIF06-SD02F3 requires less than 7mm² of board space, compared to approximately 30mm² to provide the same functions with discrete components.

The chip is compliant with standard and high-speed SD formats, and with MiniSD, MMC and µSD/TransFlash. It provides a high level of ESD protection to exposed external memory card slots, efficient EMI filtering to protect data lines against RF interference, and pull-up and pull-down resistors to prevent floating data lines. ESD protection on the card-side pins meets the stringent IEC61000-4-2 Level 4 standard, 15kV air discharge. The 800MHz to 3GHz EMI filter achieves over 20dB attenuation at 1GHz.

In addition, six high-speed bidirectional level shifters, designed for 50MHz operation and with 3ns typical propagation delay, enable the interfacing of 2.9V memory cards with 1.8V host processors. A maximum channel-to-channel skew of 1.5ns ensures data transmission integrity, and the drivers are optimised for low-power applications with quiescent off-current of 1µA.

Power for the memory card is provided through an on-chip 2.9V LDO CMOS voltage regulator, with 200mA current capability and an input voltage range of 3.1V to 5V. The drop-out voltage is 100mV maximum with a 200mA load. A switch-off control pin, with fast 30µs turn-on time, helps minimise a product's power consumption and extend battery life, and the regulator includes thermal shutdown, undervoltage lockout and shortcircuit protection.

The EMIF06-SD02F3 is available in a Pb-free, 24-bump, 400µm pitch flip-chip, and is currently in volume production. It is priced at Rs.44.49 ($1.10) for quantities up to 10 lakh units, and Rs.38.43 ($0.95) in quantities of 10 lakh to 50 lakh units.

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