LONDON Power amplifier specialist Nujira (Cambridge, England) has raised a further £10 million to accelerate development of its handset technology. The company has also set up a group to work on projects in the defense sector, targeting improved power efficiency for military gear using its High Accuracy Tracking amplifier technology.
The additional funds will also be used to support commercial development of cellular infrastructure and TV broadcast sectors.
The round is being supported by another specialist fund focusing on clean technologies, the Environmental Technologies Fund (ETF), as well as existing backers Bank Invest, Amadeus, Mitsubishi UFJ Capital and 3i, now DFJ Esprit.
The total VC funds raised by Nujira is now £26 million, "and this should take us through to break-even point within 18 months," Tim Haynes, CEO of Nujira told EE Times Europe .
He added that raising this large amount in the current economic climate is "a fantastic achievement
" and is particularly pleased to have on board the ETF as it validates the company's strategy for working on a range of projects that will greatly improve power efficiency in the wireless communications both handsets and infrastructure broadcast and now military sectors, based on its common Coolteq modulator products.
"In the U.K. TV transmission network alone, the energy wasted by PAs is more than twice the total global installed base of wind power. And as cellular subscribers demand higher and higher download rates, and mostly getting it with increased rollouts and soon even more power hungry LTE networks, the industry is realizing more needs to be done on power efficiency and energy saving. This will be a huge opportunity for us. For instance, we can see a 60 percent power efficiency for out LTE PAs," stressed Haynes.
He added the company has signed up one of the top five OEMs to its handset development platform, and that a test chip has just been taped out that should be in silicon by the end of the year. It will be made in a 0.18 micron CMOS process by foundry Jazz Semiconductor.
Haynes said part of the reasoning behind targeting the military communications sector is because the armed forces are looking to reduce the weight of equipment carried in the field, and, again, the Coolteq technology would help solve the problem.
Development of solutions has already started with two un-named customers and early evaluation has indicated power savings of 30 percent are achievable.
The company is now developing a specific module for this application, based on the Coolteq-h module for cellular base stations. Potential applications for its Coolteq-l modulator for handsets and Coolteq-u modulator for broadcast transmitters are also being explored. The company expects to release a prototype in early 2010 with volume production later in the year.
Nujira's DPD module said to simplify basestation design
Nujira amplifies handset development efforts
'The envelope, please' takes on new meaning with Nujira