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Design Considerations of a Sub-50 μW Receiver Front-end for Implantable Devices in MedRadio Band

10/18/2017
by   Gregory Chang, et al.
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Emerging health-monitor applications, such as information transmission through multi-channel neural implants, image and video communication from inside the body etc., calls for ultra-low active power (<50μW) high data-rate, energy-scalable, highly energy-efficient (pJ/bit) radios. Previous literature has strongly focused on low average power duty-cycled radios or low power but low-date radios. In this paper, we investigate power performance trade-off of each front-end component in a conventional radio including active matching, down-conversion and RF/IF amplification and prioritize them based on highest performance/energy metric. The analysis reveals 50Ω active matching and RF gain is prohibitive for 50μW power-budget. A mixer-first architecture with an N-path mixer and a self-biased inverter based baseband LNA, designed in TSMC 65nm technology show that sub 50μW performance can be achieved up to 10Mbps (< 5pJ/b) with OOK modulation.

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