UMC announces 40nm RFSOI platform to accelerate 5G mmWave applications

Staff reporter, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Credit: AFP

United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), today announced that its 40nm RFSOI technology platform is now ready for production of millimeter-wave (mmWave) radio frequency (RF) front-end products, enabling the proliferation of 5G wireless networks and applications including smartphones, Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) systems, and small cell base stations.

While the majority of today's 5G networks operates in the sub-8GHz bands, mmWave technology employs a new frequency spectrum between 24GHz and 60GHz, making it possible to deliver blazing-fast transfer speeds, extremely low latency, and more reliable connectivity. UMC's new platform, 40RFSOI, is optimized for manufacturing RF switches, low noise amplifiers, and power amplifiers capable of handling the wider bandwidth of mmWave frequencies. Balancing the need for more RF components in mmWave modules while keeping the size compact, 40RFSOI is an ideal solution for customers designing integrated RF chips that combines beamformers, core and passive devices, as well as front-end components on a single IC.

"The full potential of 5G hinges on the mainstream rollout of mmWave to deliver the speed and capacity required for virtual and augmented reality, smart cities, industrial automation, and applications in healthcare. With the introduction of our 40RFSOI platform, UMC expands our RF portfolio to enable our customers to deliver their advanced 5G devices to market and capture opportunities in the growing mmWave market," said Raj Verma, Associate Vice President of Technology Development at UMC. "Several customers are currently engaged with us to customize the 40RFSOI process for their RF front-end products, and volume production is expected to start in 2024."

UMC offers the most comprehensive RF front-end module solutions serving a broad range of applications including mobile, Wi-Fi, automotive, IoT, and satellite communications. The company's family of RFSOI solutions ranges from 8-inch to 12-inch wafer manufacturing. Since 2014, UMC has had over 400 product tape-outs and more than 35 billion RFSOI chips shipped for various applications. Its 55nm RFSOI technology has been in production for years serving the 5G sub-8GHz market.