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Tools and Methodology for RF IC Design

By Al Dunlop, Alper Demir, Peter Feldmann, Sharad Kapur, David Long, Robert Melville and Jaijeet Roychowdhury


We describe powerful new techniques for the analysis of RF circuits. Next-generation CAD tools based on such techniques should enable RF designers to obtain a more accurate picture of how their circuits will operate. These new simulation capabilities will be essential in order to reduce the number of design iterations needed to produce complex RF ICs. 1 Introduction Design methodology and superior computer-aided design tools are key to success in the integrated circuit (IC) business. They are particularly important in the case of radio-frequency (RF) IC applications, where the digital IC divide-and-conquerdesign style, based on partitioning by functional blocks and abstraction levels, does not apply. The goal of an RF designer is to get a manufacturable design that meets the specifications with minimum cost, under severe time-to-market constraints. Unlike traditional discretecomponent RF design, prototyping is practically impossible, and the validation of a design can only be done b..

Year: 1999
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