Cadence® system design and verification solutions, integrated under our System Development Suite, provide the simulation, acceleration, emulation, and management capabilities.
System Development Suite Related Products A-Z
Cadence® digital design and signoff solutions provide a fast path to design closure and better predictability, helping you meet your power, performance, and area (PPA) targets.
Full-Flow Digital Solution Related Products A-Z
Cadence® custom, analog, and RF design solutions can help you save time by automating many routine tasks, from block-level and mixed-signal simulation to routing and library characterization.
Overview Related Products A-Z
Driving efficiency and accuracy in advanced packaging, system planning, and multi-fabric interoperability, Cadence® package implementation products deliver the automation and accuracy.
Cadence® PCB design solutions enable shorter, more predictable design cycles with greater integration of component design and system-level simulation for a constraint-driven flow.
An open IP platform for you to customize your app-driven SoC design.
Comprehensive solutions and methodologies.
Helping you meet your broader business goals.
A global customer support infrastructure with around-the-clock help.
24/7 Support - Cadence Online Support
Locate the latest software updates, service request, technical documentation, solutions and more in your personalized environment.
Cadence offers various software services for download. This page describes our offerings, including the Allegro FREE Physical Viewer.
The Cadence Academic Network helps build strong relationships between academia and industry, and promotes the proliferation of leading-edge technologies and methodologies at universities renowned for their engineering and design excellence.
Participate in CDNLive
A huge knowledge exchange platform for academia to network with industry. We are looking for academic speakers to talk about their research to the industry attendees at the Academic Track at CDNLive EMEA and Silicon Valley.
Come & Meet Us @ Events
A huge knowledge exchange platform for academia. We are looking for academic speakers to talk about their research to industry attendees.
Americas University Software Program
Join the 250+ qualified Americas member universities who have already incorporated Cadence EDA software into their classrooms and academic research projects.
EMEA University Software Program
In EMEA, Cadence works with EUROPRACTICE to ensure cost-effective availability of our extensive electronic design automation (EDA) tools for non-commercial activities.
Apply Now For Jobs
If you are a recent college graduate or a student looking for internship. Visit our exclusive job search page for interns and recent college graduate jobs.
Cadence is a Great Place to do great work
Learn more about our internship program and visit our careers page to do meaningful work and make a great impact.
Get the most out of your investment in Cadence technologies through a wide range of training offerings.
Overview All Courses Asia Pacific EMEANorth America
Instructor-led training [ILT] are live classes that are offered in our state-of-the-art classrooms at our worldwide training centers, at your site, or as a Virtual classroom.
Online Training is delivered over the web to let you proceed at your own pace, anytime and anywhere.
Exchange ideas, news, technical information, and best practices.
The community is open to everyone, and to provide the most value, we require participants to follow our Community Guidelines that facilitate a quality exchange of ideas and information.
It's not all about the technlogy. Here we exchange ideas on the Cadence Academic Network and other subjects of general interest.
Cadence is a leading provider of system design tools, software, IP, and services.
Get email delivery of the Cadence blog featured here
The need for RF integration in consumer electronics presents some tough challenges, says veteran electronics industry editor John Donovan. He notes several emerging approaches that might help ease the challenge.
In simpler times most designs were digital. Add a few converters to handle I/O and you could ship the product. Consumer electronics—and cell phones in particular—changed all that. Now there are few consumer designs that don’t involve a large analog/mixed-signal component as well as multiple RF chains. Adding a few ADCs and DACs to the signal path isn’t enough; the three worlds are now heavily intertwined.
Digital and analog designs start with some basic differences. Digital designs tend to focus on the time domain, whereas analog designs are more concerned with the frequency domain. Digital designers worry about time delays; analog designers worry about the accuracy of their components, which they can’t change by editing a few lines of code. For RF designers there are no simple components; every resistor has stray capacitance and inductance, and every trace is an antenna. Parasitic extraction hits a whole new level of complexity in RF designs. RF integration is the single biggest challenge for SoC designers and a major headache at the board level, too.
Designing the RF front end for a cell phone involves some serious tradeoffs. The power amplifier (PA) is second only to the display as an energy hog in handsets. Modern handset receivers typically have a sensitivity in the range of -106 dBm. They also need to be able reject a 60 dB out-of-band signal without flattening the front end. The obvious solution is to crank up the power to the front end, since bandwidth and power are directly related—a tough tradeoff in a portable device.
In handsets you’ll also need to provide multiple RF chains that operate on different frequency bands for cellular, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, UMTS, Mobile WiMAX, GPS and more. Oh, and you want DTV, DAB and FM with that, too? Just finding room on a tiny PC board for a combination of these protocols, each with different antennas operating at different frequencies—or MIMO antennas with multiple data streams—is problematic enough. Keeping them from interacting or radiating spurious signals back into the analog sections of the board is a serious headache. Integrating RF components onto silicon along side analog mixers, filters and LNAs is trickier still.
One way to ease the pain of RF integration is to go digital as quickly as possible. So-called “digital RF” doesn’t really replace a UHF sine wave with a string of bits, but it comes close. On the receive side, direct-conversion receivers combine direct RF sampling with discrete-time signal processing. The RF signal is sampled at the Nyquist rate, converted into packets, filtered, down-converted and fed to the baseband processor. The transmit PA, in one configuration, is a series of digital NMOS switches that feed a matching network. On-chip capacitors smooth the square waves into an RF sine wave that is then fed to the antenna. This approach can cut PA power consumption in half.
The tools to enable designers to simulate and verify an RF/mixed-signal design have only recently started to appear. Traditionally analog designers have used Spice models while their digital colleagues used VHDL or Verilog. Rationalizing the results was at best time consuming. Now we’re starting to see SystemC models that include concurrency, bit accuracy, timing and hierarchy, enabling designers working at the architectural level to do hardware/software co-design, synthesizing and verifying a design down to the silicon. We’re still not to the point where you can go smoothly from algorithmic exploration to netlists, but we’re getting there.
Someday soon analog and RF will no longer be the exclusive turf of grumpy greybeards in corner cubes. They’ll be just two more tools in every designer’s toolkit.
John Donovan is the editor of Low-Power Design (www.low-powerdesign.com), a new on-line publication. He was previously Editor-in-Chief of Portable Design, managing editor of EDN Asia and PR Director at Cypress Semiconductor. He has spent 25 years covering the electronics industry, focusing on semiconductor and wireless technologies. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.