Spanish National Research Council · University of Seville
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Research Units » Analog and Mixed-Signal Microelectronics » Design of Analog-to-Digital Converters and Mixed-Signal Interfaces

Design of Analog-to-Digital Converters and Mixed-Signal Interfaces


Ángel Rodríguez Vázquez


Rocío del Río Fernández


Keywords: ADCs; DACs; mixed-signal interfaces; nyquist; sigma-delta; pipeline; SAR; current-steering; design methodologies; behavioral modeling; performance optimization

Research, development, and innovation regarding the implementation of high-performance mixed-signal interfaces, including front-end amplifiers, ADCs and DACs, in mainstream CMOS technological processes. Covered activities include:
  • Exploration of novel architectural and circuital techniques for ADCs and DACs that are specially suited for low-voltage low-power operation in deep-submicron and nanometer CMOS processes.
  • Modeling of second-order phenomena and exploration of fundamental operation limits and constraints.
  • Development of top-down methodologies that support their optimized performance from the early design phases, including accurate behavioral modeling of mixed-signal circuital blocks.
  • Exploration of reconfiguration strategies and programmability techniques at the architecture and circuit level for adaptive interface performance.
  • Exploration of calibration techniques and architectures.
  • Optimum chip implementation and verification.
The areas of application include wireline, wireless and optoelectronic communications, sensor interfaces, and medical electronics.
Expertise is supported by a long-term tradition (over 20 years) in the field of mixed-signal design, with special emphasis on sigma-delta, pipeline, ramp and SAR ADCs and several chips successfully transferred to industry. The accumulated know-how drives R&D, cooperation, and dissemination activities with both academia and world-leader industrial partners.
Industrial partners of R&D activities in the field of analog-to-digital interfaces
Summary of designed sigma-delta modulator ICs
Research Highlights
J. Ruiz-Amaya, M. Delgado-Restituto and A. Rodriguez-Vazquez, Device-Level Modeling and Synthesis of High-Performance Pipeline ADCs, Springer, 2011 » doi
R. del Rio, F. Medeiro, B. Perez-Verdu, J.M. de la Rosa and A. Rodriguez-Vazquez, CMOS Cascade Sigma-Delta Modulators for Sensors and Telecom: Error Analysis and Practical Design, Springer, 2006 » doi
J. Ruiz-Amaya, J.M. de la Rosa, F.V. Fernandez, F. Medeiro, R. del Rio, B. Perez-Verdu and A. Rodriguez-Vazquez, "High-Level Synthesis of Switched-Capacitor, Switched-Current and Continuous-Time ΣΔ Modulators using SIMULINK-Based Time-Domain Behavioral Models", IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems I: Regular Papers, vol. 52 (9), pp. 1795-1810, 2005 » doi
A. Rodriguez-Vazquez, F. Medeiro and E. Janssens (Eds.). CMOS Telecom Data Converters, Springer, 2003 » doi
Technology Transfer
Transference of a high-performance sigma-delta converter designed by our research group to Alcatel Microelectronics and STMicroelectronics for its incorporation into the ADSL2+ modem chipset ST20190 Utopia for CPE applications (massive production in 2004).
Key Research Projects & Contracts
Design of Up-Stream and Down-Stream Data Converter for New Generation ADSL6
PI: Ángel Rodríguez Vázquez
Funding Body: Alcatel Microelectronics (European private funding)
2001 - 2003
TAMES-2: Testability of Analog Macrocells Embedded into System-on-Chip (IST 2001-34283)
PI: Belén Pérez Verdú
Funding Body: European Union (European public funding)
2002 - 2004
SPIRIT: Secured Platform for Intelligent and Reconfigurable Voice and Data Terminals (MEDEA+ 2A101)
PI: Manuel Delgado Restituto
Funding Body: MEDEA+ (European public funding)
2006 - 2009