World's first millimetre-wave wireless intra-connection

08 February 2010

Sony has announced the development of millimetre-wave wireless intra-connection technology that uses high-speed wireless data transfer inside electronic products such as television sets
Sony has announced the development of millimetre-wave wireless intra-connection technology that uses high-speed wireless data transfer inside electronic products such as television sets

Sony has announced the development of millimetre-wave wireless intra-connection technology that uses high-speed wireless data transfer inside electronic products such as television sets.

By replacing wires and internal circuitry with wireless connections, this technology enables a reduction in the size and cost of the IC and other components used in electronics products, delivering advantages such as size and cost-reduction and enhanced reliability of the final product.

The advancing functionality of today's electronics products requires ever increasing quantities of internal data transfer. Once wired connections approach the limit of their data capacity, additional circuitry is required to facilitate larger data transfers; and this leads to the issue of increasingly complicated IC packages, intricately printed circuit boards, and larger IC sizes.

This new wireless intra-connection system is based on millimetre-wave wireless data transfer technology. Millimetre-wave refers to electromagnetic waves with a frequency of 30GHz to 300GHz, and wavelength between 1mm to 10mm. With their high frequency, millimetre-waves are suited to ultra high-speed data transfer, while a further advantage is their ability to transfer data using only very small antennas. The high frequency technologies used in this system also draw on Sony's extensive expertise and years of experience in the field of wireless communications and broadcast products. Specifically, Sony has integrated energy-efficient millimetre-wave circuits on 40nm-CMOS-LSIs (with an active footprint of 0.13mm2 including both the transmitter and receiver), to achieve high speed, 11Gbps data transfer over a distance of 14mm using antennas approximately 1mm in size.

By replacing physical circuitry in electronics products with high speed wireless connections, this new data transfer technology reduces the number of wired connections and minimises IC use, to simplify the IC package and printed circuit board. Furthermore, because the data transfer occurs without contact, this enhances the reliability of movable and detachable parts within the product.

Sony will proceed with efforts to adopt this technology in a range of electronics products, while continuing its development to meet increasing data-rate requirements.

Synchronised detection, which aligns the receiver with the transmitted carrier frequency, is an effective means of providing sufficient transmission range for intra-connection, while also ensuring low power consumption. However, the PLL (Phase Locked Loop) generally used for this synchronisation has the disadvantage of requiring large, power-consuming circuitry to transmit at millimetre-wave frequency. By adopting an injection lock system that eliminates PLL, Sony has enabled synchronised detection over small size circuits, while also minimising power consumption and providing sufficient transmission range for successful intra-connection.

This technology, used together with miniature antennas approximately 1mm in length, enable transmission speeds of 11Gbps over a distance of 14mm, with power consumption of 70mW. It is possible for this distance to be extended to around 50mm using high directivity antennas.


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