Analysis and design of wideband voltage controlled oscillators using self-oscillating active inductors.
Szczepkowski, Grzegorz (2010) Analysis and design of wideband voltage controlled oscillators using self-oscillating active inductors. PhD thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.
Voltage controlled oscillators (VCOs) are essential components of RF circuits used in transmitters and receivers as sources of carrier waves with variable frequencies. This, together with a rapid development of microelectronic circuits, led to an extensive research on integrated implementations of the oscillator circuits. One of the known approaches to oscillator design employs resonators with active inductors electronic circuits simulating the behavior of passive inductors using only transistors and capacitors. Such resonators occupy only a fraction of the silicon area necessary for a passive inductor, and thus allow to use chip area more eectively. The downsides of the active inductor approach include: power consumption and noise introduced by transistors. This thesis presents a new approach to active inductor oscillator design using selfoscillating active inductor circuits. The instability necessary to start oscillations is provided by the use of a passive RC network rather than a power consuming external circuit employed in the standard oscillator approach. As a result, total power consumption of the oscillator is improved. Although, some of the active inductors with RC circuits has been reported in the literature, there has been no attempt to utilise this technique in wideband voltage controlled oscillator design. For this reason, the dissertation presents a thorough investigation of self-oscillating active inductor circuits, providing a new set of design rules and related trade-os. This includes: a complete small signal model of the oscillator, sensitivity analysis, large signal behavior of the circuit and phase noise model. The presented theory is conrmed by extensive simulations of wideband CMOS VCO circuit for various temperatures and process variations. The obtained results prove that active inductor oscillator performance is obtained without the use of standard active compensation circuits. Finally, the concept of self-oscillating active inductor has been employed to simple and fast OOK (On-Off Keying) transmitter showing energy eciency comparable to the state of the art implementations reported in the literature.
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