NXP Semiconductors N.V. has released the BGU8006 low-noise amplifier (LNA), the smallest GPS LNA available on the market, for small portable GPS devices. It is available in an insanely small WLCSP (wafer-level chip-scale package), with a footprint of a mere 0.65 X 0.44 X 0.2 mm requiring just two external components. This saves 38 percent in PCB space as compared to today’s smallest available solution. It features a very low noise figure of 0.60 dB and offers the very best reception for normally weak GPS signals by suppressing stronger WLAN and cellular transmit signals. NXP’s BGU800x series of LNAs was showcased at the IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium (IMS2012) in Montreal in late June.
“Smartphones, tablets, personal navigation devices and automotive telematics applications all suffer from communication delays when network reception is poor, and have to wait for data to refresh as the GPS searches for satellite signal. Our new BGU8006 LNA helps to maintain optimal GPS signal reception for as long as possible – on a chip that is so small, it isn’t even visible to the naked eye,” said the marketing director of the RF small signal product line at NXP Semiconductors, Erick Olsen. “As GPS functionality becomes ubiquitous, the ability to deliver better accuracy and faster Time to First Fix will vastly improve user experience and enable operators to provide more sophisticated Location Based Services down the line.”
The BGU8006 LNA relies on adaptive biasing techniques to detect in an instant any signal from jammers, temporarily increasing the current, all powered by the state-of-the-art QuBIC4Xi SiGe:C BiCMOS process technology. This adaptive biasing suppresses stronger WLAN, Bluetooth, and cellular signals which normally send typical GPS LNAs into compression, creating harmonics and intermodulation that typically beat out the weaker signals, ultimately leading to shoddy GPS reception. The adaptive biasing technology of the BGU8006 improves linearity – 10 dB better IP3 under -40 to -20 dBm jamming conditions – and provides more effective output up to -15 dBm.
The size of the BGU8006 LNA is perfect for small GPS devices. The WLCSP cuts down on parasitic inductance because there aren’t any interposer connections, leads, or bond wires, and also improves size, cost, and thermal characteristics. NXP is also offering the BGU8007 LNA, which is a 1.45 X 1.0 X 0.5 mm 6-pin leadless SOT886 package. Both of the LNAs rely on only one external matching inductor and one external decoupling capacitor for added savings.
These BGU800x LNAs are ideal for a host of devices relying on GPS technology: smartphones, tablets, personal navigation devices, feature phones, digital video and still cameras, GPS chip-set modules, and RF modules for phones. NXP also offers the BGU7004 and BGU7008, both AEC-Q100 qualified, for things such as emergency call and toll collection systems.