A Game-Changing MEMS Timing Solution for 5G Infrastructure


Enables 5G Equipment to be Deployed Anywhere, in Any Environment

SANTA CLARA, Calif. SiTimeCorporation announced the Emerald Platform, a revolutionary precision timing solution that solves critical timing challenges for 5G infrastructure equipment. With the Emerald Platform, operators can deploy 5G equipment in harsh environments and reliably offer mission-critical services.

SiTime’sEmerald Platform is the first MEMS oven controlled oscillator (OCXO) in the industry. OCXOs offer the pinnacle of performance in timing and are critical to the reliable operation of all communications networks. However, quartz-based OCXOs are extremely sensitive to environmental stressors such as vibration, temperature changes and shock, which can degrade network performance, reduce uptime, and impact mission-critical services such as advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). SiTime’s Emerald OCXOs solve these problems.

Solving the Usability Challenges of Quartz OCXOs

Because of the sensitivity of legacy quartz OCXOs, customers have to take many precautions to ensure reliable operation. A key challenge is the board placement of the OCXO, which needs to be located far away from stressors such as heat and airflow-induced thermal shock. This results in increased routing complexity and potential signal integrity problems. Designers have also tried using specialized plastic OCXO covers for thermal isolation, which introduces additional manufacturing steps and production complexity. Emerald MEMS OCXOs eliminate all of these problems; they simplify design, reduce development time, accelerate revenue, while improving system performance.

Flexibility Through Programmability

Legacy quartz OCXOs are custom built, from the ground up. There are severe limitations on the availability of features, such as frequencies, output types, operating temperature, and in-system control. SiTime’s Emerald Platform MEMS OCXOs do not have these limitations. Using a programmable analog architecture, the Emerald OCXO offers any frequency between 1 and 220 MHz, ensuring that the customer can select the optimal frequency for their application. The device also offers two output types, LVCMOS and clipped sine-wave, for optimal board performance. In the near future, the Emerald OCXO will also offer extended temperature operation (-40 to +95C, -40 to +105C) and an I2C serial interface for in-system programmability.

Technology Highlights

All comparisons are with quartz-based Stratum 3E OCXOs

·         10 times better performance in the presence of airflow and thermal shock

o   ΔF/ΔT dynamic stability: ±50 ppt/°C typical (ppt = parts per trillion)

o   Allan deviation (ADEV): 2e-11 under airflow

·         Unmatched ease-of-use

o   No restrictions on PCB placement

o   No mechanical shielding is required for thermal isolation

o   On-chip regulators, no need for external LDOs or ferrite beads

o   Resistant to humidity

·         Size: 9 x 7 mm, 75% smaller. Adapter boards are available to match common OCXO footprints

·         Height: 6.5 mm, 40% thinner, eliminates obstruction in a chassis-based system

·         20 times better vibration resistance, ideal for outdoor pole mounted equipment

·         Resistant to microphonic and/or board bending effects, ideal for large telecom PCBs

·         Supports -40 to +85°C temperature range today, -40 to +95°C and -40 to +105°C support available in the near future

·         The only programmable OCXO platform, supports any frequency up to 220 MHz and LVCMOS / clipped sine-wave outputs

·         Semiconductor-level quality and reliability, batch to batch consistency

·         No activity dips