Preparing for 5G RF Filter Design with Cloud Engineering Simulation
New OnScale white paper outlines efficient simulation-drive design of RF MEMS filters for emerging 5G applications.
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September 23, 2019
The availability of higher-bandwidth wireless networks and additional technological advances have enabled new types of machine-to-machine/device-to-device applications like telemedicine, 4K video streaming, cloud computing, autonomous driving, and, of course, the Internet of Things.
Next-generation applications will require even more bandwidth and higher operating frequencies than the current 4G LTE (long-term evolution) wireless technology. New 5G wireless technologies are emerging, but the system architecture of 5G RF front-ends (RFFEs) is complex and will require a smaller footprint than current technology. In addition, these new devices will need to be highly efficient in power consumption and cost, and require more than 100 RF filters to be fitted into the design.
Cloud engineering simulation software provider OnScale has produced a white paper outlining how RF MEMS acoustic resonator-based filters can be more effectively designed, which will reduce cost, risk and time to market. OnScale also offers a number of online simulation guides for use with its cloud-based platform.
RF filter design engineers typically apply a number of simulation methods to help meet the requirements of these emerging 5G applications. Those methods often require simplifying assumptions to simulate the frequency response for filters in a reasonable time frame. However, those assumptions can negatively affect the quality of the design because they can lead false conclusions.
The simulation approach outlined in the white paper leverages cloud-based, 3D finite element method (FEM)-based capabilities of the OnScale software. The platform provides multiphysics solvers combined with the limitless compute power of cloud supercomputers that the company says allow designers to explore in the time-domain various designs simultaneously and simulate a 3D acoustic resonator for the entire filter die.
“Design engineers adopting OnScale software for their simulation efforts can access the necessary computational power to run a full 3D acoustic wave resonator simulation, including thermal and electromagnetic effects,” the white paper states. “They do so without geometric and physical approximations and with a multiphysics solver specifically written to get the most out of HPC.”
The transition from 4G to 5G wireless technology will revolutionize the communications landscape and enable all sorts of new applications. Smartphone and other device manufacturers will face increasing challenges when it comes to having multiple radiofrequency bands operating in close proximity, and designers will be taxed with using precision analog filters to isolate those bands. New simulation approaches enabling the creation of digital prototypes will make it easier to meet those requirements in a more cost-effective way.