Ionocom - Wireless Design

By: Ionocom  09-12-2011

A particular focus for Ionocom is design of wireless products, using our broad experience over a wide range of technologies and frequency bands, with emphasis on short-range communications.

13.56MHz RFID
We have designed several products using the 13.56MHz RFID band, including active asset tracking systems and a multi-antenna tag reader for passive tags.

88-108MHz Broadcast FM
We have designed several low-power licence-exempt FM transmitter products for use with portable music players. In addition to stereo audio we have designed products that transmit RDS data.

433MHz Proprietary Short-Range Devices
We have designed many products using the common 433MHz ISM band for short-range communication. Our experience includes systems with antenna and frequency diversity.

850-2100MHz Cellular
We have designed products including cellular voice and data functionality, using solutions from suppliers such as MultiTech, Wavecom and Qualcomm, in all of the major North American frequency bands, on CDMA and GSM networks.

1575MHz GPS
We have designed products with GPS receivers from suppliers such as Telit, Qualcomm and Ublox. Products have included gyroscopes and other methods to enhance location performance. We have used both patch and helical antennas.

2.4GHz ZigBee
We have designed ZigBee radios into products to provide wireless data transfer, using modular solutions and also discrete component designs based on chips from Ember Corp. Our work has included firmware as well as hardware, and we are familiar with the ZigBee stack.

2.4GHz Proprietary Short-Range Devices
We have designed many products using proprietary protocols in the 2.4GHz ISM band, typically using chips from Nordic Semiconductor. Projects have ranged from parking management systems through wireless mice and keyboards to iPhone accessories.

We also have experience with other systems and frequencies ranging from shortwave (3-30MHz) through VHF and UHF to radar (5GHz).

In all these frequency bands we can select and design-in off-the-shelf antenna solutions. We have used monopoles, dipoles, loops, patch, helical and PIFA solutions. We also have the capability to design, model and simulate custom wire and planar (PCB trace) antennas for low-cost applications.

Ionocom has a variety of RF engineering design software available including SPICE, HP Touchstone, NEC-Win, EZNEC and Sonnet.

Other products and services from Ionocom


Ionocom - Capabilities

We have a workshop area equipped with a small vertical mill and various other tools that allow us to fabricate small mechanical piece parts and to machine enclosures for prototypes. Ionocom is well-equipped to conduct most design and development work with a comprehensive set of digital, base-band and RF test equipment. We have facilities to produce prototype units, including leaded and surface mount assembly equipment.


Ionocom - PCB Design

Our experience ranges from single-sided boards designed for absolute minimum cost to high-performance multi-layer boards with power and ground planes designed for RF. Analog circuits where careful attention to routing and grounding is required to reduce noise and interference. We use OrCAD for maintenance of existing designs and for projects where clients prefer these tools.


Ionocom - Other Design

Ionocom offers mechanical design of simple piece-parts associated with PCBs such as brackets and heat-sinks, custom displays, moulded keypads and other electro-mechanical items and front panels. We have designed systems ranging from simple, self-contained "go/no-go" test boxes through to computer-automated systems including GPIB-controlled test equipment and custom test jigs.


Ionocom - Software Development

Firmware is embedded software that is a permanent part of the product, typically stored in Flash memory and usually performing low-level functions that directly control the hardware. We have experience with 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit microcontrollers from suppliers such as Microchip, Texas Instruments, Rabbit and Atmel, and industry-standard parts such as the 8051.


Ionocom - Electronic Design

We have experience with 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit microcontrollers from supplies such as Microchip, Texas Instruments, Rabbit and Atmel, and industry-standard parts such as the 8051. We have solid digital logic design experience from tiny, low-power, discrete gate designs through to complex programmable-logic devices from suppliers such as Altera and Xilinx.