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Single-chip network synchronisation provides ultra-precise timing for 5G radio access equipment

03 August 2021

New solution combines integration and performance in one compact, low-power device supported by Microchip’s IEEE 1588 Precision Time Protocol (PTP) and synchronisation algorithm software modules.

Microchip Technology Inc. now makes it possible to achieve 5G performance with the first single-chip, highly integrated, low-power, multi-channel integrated circuit (IC), coupled with the company’s reliable IEEE 1588 Precision Time Protocol (PTP) and clock recovery algorithm software modules.

“Our newest ZL3073x/63x/64x network synchronization platform implements sophisticated measure, calibrate and tune capabilities, thereby significantly reducing network equipment time error to meet the most stringent 5G requirements,” said Rami Kanama, Vice President of Microchip’s timing and communications business unit. 

“A uniquely flexible architecture for implementing the necessary channel density as well as high-performance, low-jitter synthesisers help simplify the design of timing cards, line cards, Radio Units (RU), Centralized Units (CUs) and Distributed Units (DUs) for 5G Radio Access Networks (RAN).”

Microchip’s measure, calibrate and tune capabilities ensure 5G systems achieve International Telecommunication Union – Telecommunication (ITU-T) Standard G.8273.2 Class C (30ns max|TE|) and the emerging Class D (5ns max|TEL|) time error requirements. The architecture provides flexibility, offering up to five independent Digital Phase Locked Loop (DPLL) channels, while consuming only 0.9W of power in a compact 9 x 9 mm package that simultaneously reduces board space, power and system complexity. 

With five ultra-low-jitter synthesisers, this latest platform offers 100 femtosecond (fs) root mean square (RMS) jitter performance required by high-speed interfaces in the latest 5G RU, DU and CU systems.

Microchip’s network synchronisation platform software includes its ZLS30730 high-performance algorithm, coupled with its ZLS30390 IEEE 1588-2008 protocol engine. Both are widely deployed in 3G, 4G and 5G networks with precise timing capabilities. 

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