High Speed×Resolution Nyquist A/D Conversion for Low-Latency Applications

Jun Feng , Filip Tavernier Mixed-signal circuits and data converters

Our wish: The latency of analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) in communication links has become a new critical aspect for some quickly evolving applications (such as fully autonomous cars). Therefore, we must steer away from traditional, heavily-pipelined ADCs.

Challenges: the demand for high data throughput and good fidelity is great, as is the desire for excellent ADC power efficiency. Especially above medium operation speeds, it becomes harder to achieve good power efficiency with low latency, partially due to the limits of the technology at hand. Only a handful of published works are in our target space at top conferences (see figure).

Ultimately, this means that the ADCs that cater to these evolving low-latency applications will be challenging to design for low power because the power burden (and bits) per ADC sub-stage will grow. In particular, the residue amplifier will significantly dominate the power consumption.

Our research: we designed a low-power, high-gain/precision residue amplifier to solve the above challenges. This residue amplifier will be employed in a low-latency Nyquist ADC in the high-resolution, 100+ MS/s range. This prototype chip (see figure) was implemented throughout 2022-2023 and is currently being evaluated.

Get in touch
Jun Feng
Phd student
Filip Tavernier
Academic staff

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