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Design of a low-power 10 GHz LC voltage controlled oscillator (LC-VCO) for wirelesscommunications in FDSOI technology

Agiorgousis Nikolaos-Dimosthenis

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Year 2023
Type of Item Diploma Work
Bibliographic Citation Nikolaos-Dimosthenis Agiorgousis, "Design of a low-power 10 GHz LC voltage controlled oscillator (LC-VCO) for wireless communications in FDSOI technology", Diploma Work, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Technical University of Crete, Chania, Greece, 2023
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The present thesis aimed to study, design, and simulate a voltage-controlledoscillator (VCO) for wireless communications at 10GHz. Almost the entire work was conducted at weasic Microelectronics S.A, which provided access to simulation tools and the process design kit.The proposed oscillator adopts an NMOS cross-coupled pair LC-VCOcircuit which is implemented in a 22nm FD-SOI process known for its fullydepleted silicon layer. This technology ensures superior power efficiency, mitigates short-channel effects and offers enhanced control over transistor electrostatics. Investigations revealed that the reduced temperature sensitivityof FD-SOI contributes to stable performance, critical for a high-performanceLC-VCO. The initial specifications for implementing this specific VCO wereto operate in a frequency range from 9.5GHz to 10.125GHz. Indeed, in thisthesis, the operating frequencies range from 9.44GHz to 10.17GHz with astep of 4.8MHz. The phase noise at the operating frequency of 10GHz isquantified at -125.138dBc/Hz at a 1MHz offset with a tuned control voltagefrom 0.1V to 1.1V. The oscillator consumes 12.9mW with a 10.448mA DCcurrent at a 1.24V supply voltage. The overall performance of the LC-VCOis compared to that of other published oscillators using quality indicators(Figures of Merit, FoM).In this thesis, after extensive investigations, such as parametric explorations and studies of cases, the significance of the quality factor becameevident, both for the individual passive elements of the circuit and the overall system. It was revealed how this factor influences the performance of theoverall design, determining it as the ’bottleneck’ of the system by influencingphase noise.

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