It is believed that we are just at the beginning with wireless, and that a new age is dawning for this breakthrough technology. Thanks to several years of industrial manufacturing in mass-market applications such as cellular phones, wireless technology has nowadays reached a level of maturity that, combined with other achievements arising from different fields, such as information technology, artificial intelligence, pervasive computing, science of new materials, and micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS), will enable the realization of a networked stream-flow of real-time information, that will accompany us in our daily life, in a total seamless, transparent fashion. As almost any application scenario will require the deployment of complex, miniaturized, almost "invisible" systems, operating with different wireless standards, hard technological challenges will have to be faced for designing and fabricating ultra-low-cost, reconfigurable, and multi-mode heterogeneous smart micro-devices. But ongoing, unending progresses on wireless technology keeps the promise of helping to solve important societal problems in the health-care, safety, security, industry, environment sectors, and in general opening the possibility for an improved quality of life at work, on travel, at home, practically "everywhere, anytime".
KEYWORDS: Global system for mobile communications, Analog electronics, Transmitters, Modulation, Digital signal processing, Digital filtering, Rutherfordium, Standards development, Modulators, Amplifiers
A GSM base-band transmitter with strong requirements for linearity, matching and power dissipation has been designed in Atmel CMOS 0.18um technology. This paper recalls the digital Gaussian Minimum Shift Keying (GMSK) modulation imposed by the ETSI standard and briefly considers the design and the physical implementation of the transmitter itself (IQDAC) into a noisy environment. A test-chip, including the entire GSM base-band (IQDAC and IQADC) and a digital GMSK modulator, is presented. Measurement results are summarized at the end for the transmit part.