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Silicon Labs Acquires Qulsar’s Precision Time Protocol Software and Modules

October 21, 2019 by Paul Shepard

Silicon Labs (SLAB) has acquired all IEEE 1588 precision time protocol (PTP) software and module assets from Qulsar, a leading provider of PTP grandmasters, gateways and other system-level synchronization-based solutions. The asset purchase includes all Qulsar modules (PTP master, gateway, boundary clocks and slave clocks) as well as IEEE 1588 servo and stack software, development tools and board support packages (BSPs) for a wide range of applications spanning small cells, optical transport, smart grid, automotive and 5G wireless infrastructure.

An example of the uses for the Qulsar modules acquired by Silicon Labs: The transition to 5G mobile technology promises massive improvements in mobile device data rates, improved coverage and connectivity as well as enhanced services. Achieving this, however, requires significant enhancements in network synchronization.

“Silicon Labs and Qulsar share a common vision of developing simplified solutions that ease the adoption of IEEE 1588 in a wide range of infrastructure applications,” said James Wilson, General Manager of Timing Products at Silicon Labs. “The addition of Qulsar’s software and modules to our 1588 network synchronizer portfolio uniquely positions us to address this fast-growing market opportunity with turnkey, carrier-grade solutions that simplify 1588 integration and accelerate time to market.”

IEEE 1588 provides precise network synchronization for 5G infrastructure by distributing time-of-day across packet-based networks. Adoption of 1588 solutions helps eliminate cost, reliability and line-of-sight issues related to GPS time synchronization and enables new 5G services that provide higher bandwidth connectivity while minimizing interference between cell sites.

“The combination of Qulsar’s 1588 hardware-software solutions and Silicon Labs’ physical layer timing products will enable Silicon Labs to accelerate product innovation and deliver highly integrated, easy-to-use precision timing solutions for a broad range of applications,” said Rajen Datta, President and CEO of Qulsar.

“Qulsar remains committed to the IEEE 1588 and precise time synchronization market. We look forward to partnering with Silicon Labs as we pivot our business model to focus on advanced system-level time synchronization and real-time sensor fusion solutions for emerging mobile infrastructure, automotive and IoT markets,” concluded Datta.

Silicon Labs is a leading provider of timing solutions for infrastructure applications, offering a broad portfolio of crystal oscillators and voltage-controlled crystal oscillators (XO/VCXOs), clock generators, clock buffers, jitter attenuators and network synchronizers. The addition of Qulsar software to this portfolio enables Silicon Labs to address cost-sensitive, software-only PTP applications with standards-compliant solutions. Qulsar modules make it easy to add IEEE 1588 to designs by tightly integrating PTP software and hardware in turnkey timing solutions.