Electrical and Computer Engineering ETDs

Author

Luis Martinez

Publication Date

2-8-2011

Abstract

This thesis concentrates on the development of a new testing procedure for the radio used in Broadcom\u201fs WLAN and cellular chips. Verification and hardware testing for the radio is completed at the end of the development cycle by the fabrication of test chips which contain only radio specific hardware. Utilizing test chips allow for component specific design verification, performance analysis and debugging of the Integrated Circuit (IC) radio before large scale production. In this thesis we present a new testing method that is intended to improve the development time, lower costs, and provide more agility within the IC radio testing process. This thesis takes an in depth look at the development and deployment of these new testing methods. It provides an examination of the hardware requirements for testing IC radios and the software developed to automate test development and control testing procedures. The main components developed for this project are the Chip Communications and Control Module and the Phase-Locked Loop controller. Respectively, these components were designed to control the operation of a test chip and configure the mechanism that locks the chip\u201fs RF signal to a desired frequency. Previous testing methods include the use of Automated Testing Equipment (ATE) and small scale test platforms built around LabVIEW. These testing methods can be costly, impractical, require longer development cycles, and are not contusive to agile methodologies. The new procedures attempt to provide a better test platform for WLAN radios by addressing these issues and matching or exceeding the requirements of the previous test platforms.

Keywords

Integrated Circuits, Hardware Testing, System Automation, IC Testing, Python

Document Type

Thesis

Language

English

Degree Name

Computer Engineering

Level of Degree

Masters

Department Name

Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Jordan, Ramiro

First Committee Member (Chair)

Heileman, Gregory

Second Committee Member

Pattichis, Marios

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