Sachin Gupta, Cypress Semiconductor
EETimes (8/18/2010 2:18 AM EDT)
Any physical system design needs both analog and digital functionality. Achieving a modular, programmable design is crucial for the demanding applications of future, which has led to more and more designs integrating subsystems and using mixed-signal architectures.
Scalability as well as dynamic changes in customer requirements are two of the challenges designers face when implementing a system using fixed-function components. A modular, programmable design helps overcome the issues associated with the porting of designs to different devices at a later stage in a product’s lifecycle.
For these kinds of applications, a programmable design allows a more flexible approach compared to fixed-function implementations. Achieving such flexibility in the analog domain, however, has been a challenge for developers. The use of switched capacitor circuits greatly helps resolve this issue
Switched capacitor blocks are the basic building blocks of a programmable analog solution. They enable the integration of both analog and digital functions onto a single chip and define today’s true system-on-chip (SoC) architectures. Conventional analog signal processing circuits use continuous time circuits consisting of resistors, capacitors and operational amplifiers.
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