Engineering 101

Custom Waveguide Circulators for 5G Infrastructure

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Innovator of high performance analog semiconductors connecting people, places and things, Skyworks Solutions, has unveiled its newest family of mini circulators for 5G infrastructure. Circulators, which play a critical role in protecting RF elements from excessive signal reflection, help eliminate performance risks and safeguard vital equipment.

Given footprint constraints in 5G, solution size is also a key factor. Leveraging proprietary materials and processes, Skyworks’ ultra-small circulators occupy up to 50% less board space than competitive products without compromising functionality, making them ideal for 5G massive MIMO and small cell applications.

Skyworks’ mini circulator family represents just one segment of the company’s expansive 5G infrastructure portfolio, which includes best-in-class high-efficiency drivers and small cell power amplifiers, advanced low noise amplifiers (LNAs) with integrated high-power switches and a broad range of individual RF devices. By providing key base station partners with comprehensive platforms, Skyworks is facilitating an essential first step in the deployment of 5G and ensuring the standard’s rapid commercialization.

“Skyworks is excited to once again be at the forefront of leading technologies enabling 5G,” said David Stasey, Vice President and General Manager of Diversified Analog Solutions for Skyworks. “Our ultra-compact, high performance circulators demonstrate how we are leveraging our unique capabilities to enhance network efficiency and deliver higher capacity with greater coverage. When combined with our mobile and Internet of Things solutions, we are truly empowering end-to-end 5G connectivity.”

According to a March 2019 report from Allied Market Research, the global 5G infrastructure market is estimated to reach $58bn by 2025, up from $371m in 2017, representing a compound annual growth rate of 96%. Growing penetration of machine-to-machine/Internet of Things connections and the surge in demand for mobile broadband services are significant drivers.

Skyworks’ suite of mini circulators is available in seven and ten millimeter packages, both of which support the size requirements of 5G infrastructure applications. These compact, high performance devices deliver optimal power handling and low insertion loss, improving the efficiency of the accompanying power amplifier.

Select products from Skyworks’ portfolio include:

  • SKYFR-001692: 3,400 to 3,600MHz single-junction robust lead circulator.
  • SKYFR-001657: 3,400 to 3,600MHz single-junction robust lead circulator.

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