picoChip today announced a family of complete reference designs that extends its offering to cover both fixed WiMAX (802.16-2004) and mobile WiMAX (802.16e and WiBRO) for mobile station (MS) and basestation (BS) designs. picoChip is the only company to offer a full range of systems in this way: the first to offer reference designs for 802.16e; the first to support both 802.16d and 802.16e; and the first to deliver the advanced options of the standard.
These reference designs are complete implementation of a Base Station or Mobile Station, including PHY, MAC, radio (via partners), hardware designs and management software. They are participating in WiMAX Forum Plugfest (interoperability) and CETECOM certification processes.
The company's existing PC6520 WiMAX reference design for 802.16d basestations is widely used in the industry. The addition of the new PC6530 (802.16e BS) and PC6620/6630 (802.16d/802.16e SS or MS) products build upon its success to make picoChip's WiMAX portfolio the most complete available. The designs are compatible with all aspects of the WiMAX specifications and are fully upgradeable, whether for new versions of the standard or for advanced features such as active antenna systems (AAS) and multiple input, multiple output (MIMO) systems. All four software versions run on the picoChip PC102 processor, which is in volume production.
The PC6520 is the industry standard basestation reference design for 'fixed' WiMAX, with more than 15 major licensees. WiMAX systems using picoChip are available from Airspan, Intel, Ericsson, Nortel, Fujitsu, Marconi and a number of other manufacturers. It is being used in publicly declared deployments in Japan (Yozan), UK (Pipex) and Italy (Marconi and Italian Ministries).
The new PC6530 is a software-only upgrade to the existing PC6520 reference design for 802.16d basestations that adds the capability to support the new 802.16e standard - to suit fixed, nomadic and mobile applications - as well as working with options for Korea (WiBRO) and China.
The new PC6620 is a ground-breaking new reference design for a 802.16d subscriber stations. The design is particularly useful for specialist applications that demand better performance than standard chipsets can offer. As with the PC6520, the new design is software-upgradeable: completing the range, the PC6630 adds support for OFMDA and 802.16e for mobile stations.
The systems offer the industry's highest level of performance with a range of features that include multi-user sub-channelization for 802.16d, multiple subcarrier allocation modes for 802.16e, STC (space time coding) and antenna diversity, as well as providing an upgrade path to deliver AAS or MIMO. By combining these with sophisticated algorithms, picoChip-based systems will deliver the highest performance of any products on the market. A WiMAX Forum white paper(1) cites a potential twenty-fold increase in coverage area for a WiMAX BS, from a typical 2km radius up to 9km, if techniques such as sub-channelization and STC are exploited.
picoChip provides solutions to the key challenges of cost, development time and flexibility for next generation of wireless systems. The company's processor, the PC102, delivers a world-beating price/performance combination and has achieved design wins with numerous major companies developing wireless infrastructure. Uniquely, the company also delivers complete, standard-compliant reference designs for UMTS (including HSDPA, upgradeable to HSUPA) and WiMAX/WiBRO (802.16d upgradeable to 802.16e for mobility). The PC102 is also being used by customers to develop other advanced wireless protocols such as 802.20 and TD-SCDMA.