Cambridge Consultants has designed an intelligent radio transceiver architecture that introduces a new level of power economy and performance for in-body medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications. The design, designated SubQore , is intended for implementation on system-on-chip (SoC) solutions and provides a control and communications platform suitable for implantable medical devices – a market currently growing at double-digit rates.
The device will operate in the Medical Implant Communications Service (MICS) frequencies – the medical band now emerging as a global standard. A key attribute of Cambridge Consultants' design is exceptional power economy. This innovative architecture is expected to consume an average current of less than 1A, and less than 1.7mA peak, for a 0.05% duty-cycle, 400 kbits/second bi-directional communications application. Foe example, this would provide more than 10 years of activity from a lithium cell in a typical pacemaker application.
Further, flexibility built into the radio design also allows the chip to be used for other systems with short-term high data rate communications requirements – such as swallowable video imaging. The new implantable transceiver design, called SubQore, leverages Cambridge Consultants' portfolio of field-proven intellectual property for ultra-low power radio, as well as the consultancy's lean RISC processor core, XAP.
Extreme attention to power economy has been applied throughout the design, both to consumption in the transceiver architecture, as well as the power-saving algorithms that are employed to wake up and control the device.
Although the range of implantable medical applications is expanding exponentially, each application is different and requires a particular mix of control, monitoring and communications facilities – and Cambridge Consultants expects to fine-tune the IC core for individual applications.
Cambridge Consultants Ltd , Cambridge CB4 0DW, UK