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Issues and trends in RF and mixed signal integration and partitioning

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Over the last 40 years in the semiconductor industry, one of the most reliable truths has been that "the path forward is through integration." Moore's law and its various derivatives and cousins have illustrated how greater integration has provided tremendous benefits in cost, power, size, and performance. While shrinking process lithography has been a critical enabler of this trend, we should remember that tremendous innovation in device technology, circuits, system architecture, computer aided design (CAD), packaging, and many other areas have been necessary as well. The exponential integration phenomenon has not been limited to memory and microprocessors: mixed signal and radio functions have also seen striking advances in integration over the last 20 years, from cell phones to wireless LANs, integrated "system- on-a-chip" (SOC) transceivers have become prevalent in the circuits conferences, journals, and in some applications have even made it into commercial mainstream products.

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Communications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:46 ,  Issue: 9 )