Sunday, February 13, 2011

Freescale's Qonverge Base Station Processors Scale from Femtos to Macros

Freescale Semiconductor introduced its QorIQ Qonverge family of highly integrated base station-on-chip solutions.

Freescale's new QorIQ Qonverge series, which leverages advanced heterogeneous multicore technology, provides a unified architecture for equipment developers targeting a range of base station designs, spanning from small to large cells. It integrates communications processing, digital signal processing and wireless acceleration technologies into a single system-on-chip in various configurations optimized for next-generation femtocell, picocell, metrocell and macrocell base stations.

Specifically, QorIQ Qonverge processors combine multiple Power Architecture cores and high-performance StarCore DSPs with a MAPLE multimode baseband accelerator, packet processing acceleration engines, interconnect fabric and next-node process technology. The portfolio's products support multiple standards, including GSM, LTE -- FDD & TDD, LTE-Advanced, HSPA+, TD-SCDMA and WiMAX. In addition, the family's flexible architecture allows support for evolving standards with software upgrades.

Freescale leveraged advanced process technology to integrate multiple functions traditionally performed on separate FPGAs, ASICs, DSPs and processors. The company calculates that its QorIQ Qonverge technology can deliver 4x cost reduction and 3x power reduction for LTE + WCDMA macro base stations, and 4x cost and power reductions for LTE + WCDMA pico base stations when compared to wireless infrastructure equipment powered by discrete silicon products.

The QorIQ Qonverge portfolio includes four distinct products optimized for small cell (femto and pico) and large cell (metro and macro) applications. It also supports remote radio head and emerging cloud-based radio access network (C-RAN) configurations.

The first products in Freescale's QorIQ Qonverge multicore portfolio are built in 45-nm process technology and planned for availability in the second half of 2011. The products are the PSC9130/PSC9131 femto SoCs and PSC9132 picocell/enterprise femto SoC devices. Freescale plans to introduce portfolio members targeting larger cell (metro and macro) base stations built in 28-nm process technology later this year.

Freescale also highlighted the ecosystem of partners supporting its Qonverge approach with Layer 1 -- 4 software, transport and security stacks, RF technologies, test and measurement capabilities and ODM solutions.
These can be combined with third party tools, as well as Freescale's CodeWarrior technologies and VortiQa application software.

"Freescale's innovative QorIQ Qonverge platform provides the integration, performance, energy efficiency and unmatched scalability that our new lightRadio™ product portfolio requires," said Wim Sweldens, president of Alcatel-Lucent's Wireless Division. "Game-changing products like lightRadio disaggregate the base station between the network and the wideband active antenna, produce dramatic cost savings and need components that provide giant leaps forward such as Freescale's new QorIQ Qonverge technology."

  • Earlier this month, Alcatel-Lucent highlighted a strategic partnership with Freescale in developing its revolutionary "lightRadio" base station concept.

See also