Isle of Wight-based RF Engines Limited (RFEL) has been awarded a grant from the South East Development Agency to create a portable digital receiver capable of scanning the spectrum from zero up to 5.84GHz.
Typically, such devices only extend to 3 GHz, but with the expanding use of higher frequencies for WiFi, an increased frequency range is required.
The new wideband receiver is expected to find a home in commercial wireless communications applications, such as wireless base stations, as well as in test and measurement products.
RFEL also anticipates that it may also be deployed in hand-held media devices, where a reconfigurable receiver provides a more cost effective and smaller solution than a number of dedicated receiver circuits.
This is a progressive move for RFEL, which has, until now, been focussed on complex firmware intellectual property (IP) designs. For example, to date the company has provided individual IP Cores and System-Level Cores for Xilinx and Altera FPGAs intended for use in high performance radio systems, and other signal-processing based designs.
‘For some time now, customers have been asking us to provide complete turnkey solutions which integrate our firmware designs,’ explained John Summers, RFEL’s CEO.
‘We’ve already done this for certain key customers, but we’ve now reached a stage in the growth of the company where we feel that we can extend this added-value service, as it enables us to exploit our RF and systems expertise to deliver complete product solutions to a wider audience,’ he cocluded.