A 43-GHz wireless inter-chip data link including antennas, transmitters, and receivers is presented. The industry standard bonding wires are exploited to provide high efficiency and low-cost antennas. This type of antennas can provide an efficient horizontal communication which is hard to achieve using conventional on-chip antennas. The system uses binary amplitude shift keying (ASK) modulation to keep the design compact and power efficient. The transmitter includes a differential to single-ended modulator and a two-stage power amplifier (PA). The receiver includes a low-noise amplifier (LNA), pre-amplifiers, envelope detectors (ED), a variable gain amplifier (VGA), and a comparator. The chip is fabricated in 180-nm SiGe BiCMOS technology. With power-efficient transceivers and low-cost high-performance antennas, the implemented inter-chip link achieves bit-error rate (BER) around 10-8 for 6 Gb/s over a distance of 2 cm. The signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the recovered signal is about 24 dB with 18 ps of rms jitter. The transmitter and receiver consume 57 mW and 60 mW, respectively, including buffers. The bit energy efficiency excluding test buffers is 17 pJ/bit. The presented work shows the feasibility of a low power high data rate wireless inter-chip data link and wireless heterogeneous multi-chip networks.


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amplitude shift keying, Antennas, BiCMOS integrated circuits, error statistics, Ge-Si alloys, low noise amplifiers, power amplifiers, transceivers

Date of this Version

January 2009



Published in:

IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits 44,10 (2009) 2711-21;


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