Wireless Power Transfer and Gigabit Data from MaxLinear and NewVasTek

September 17, 2018 by Paul Shepard

MaxLinear, Inc. and NewVasTek announced a joint reference design that combines MaxLinear's AirPHY™ multi-gigabit modem technology with NewVasTek's customized AirFuel resonant wireless power technology. The joint solution is able to provide up to 60W of wireless power from an indoor unit (IDU) to an outdoor unit (ODU) with 5G modem and phased array antenna, while also transferring up to 2.5Gbps through a wireless AirPHY link.

It solves a critical problem for 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) providers that use millimeter wave (28-60GHz) radio frequencies to deliver multi-gigabit broadband services to consumers and businesses.

The 5G millimeter wave signals are not able to effectively penetrate structural walls or energy-efficient windows with low-emissivity (low-E) metallic coatings, which forces service providers to install the wireless receiver on the outside of a home or building.

Existing solutions for bridging power and data from outside to inside the home require drilling a hole through the wall and running Ethernet cabling to the indoor router or gateway. A total wireless solution is much more attractive to both homeowners and service providers as it reduces installation costs, eliminates the need for holes and wires, and enables the potential for a self-installation model, where consumers can easily install the indoor equipment without scheduling a service call or opening their home to installers.

NewVasTek has developed AirFuel resonant power transmitter units (PTU) and power receiver units (PRU). These wireless power products build on NewVasTek integration and development capabilities and its proven history of developing low- and high-power solutions compliant with the AirFuel Alliance (AFA) standards for resonant wireless charging.

Beyond the existing AirFuel Alliance standard, NewVasTek has upgraded its 6.78MHz-based resonant power transfer distance to eight inches (20cm) so the 60W of wireless power can now penetrate solid walls.

Multi-gigabit data throughput is provided by MaxLinear's MxL210x family of AirPHY data modems that operate within unlicensed radio frequency bands and below the FCC and European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) limits for radiated emissions.

The MxL210x enables wireless data throughput of up to 2.5Gbps while penetrating nearly all construction materials up to 1 meter in thickness. AirPHY technology is capable of avoiding over-the-air interference and modulating its performance for maximum speed and robustness.

"Wireless power is evolving very quickly - from charging applications to now remote powering of customer premise equipment. NewVasTek was founded to focus on the development of AirFuel resonant wireless power, as we believe it's the only wireless power technology able to transfer enough power across a certain distance," said Fang Ming Liang, President of NewVasTek.

"And unlike other low frequency wireless power technologies, its frequency doesn't heat most of the metal objects, so the application scope is much broader. Our core technology is quite suitable for this emerging application, and we're excited to demonstrate this at Mobile World Congress Americas.

"We searched for the right 5G technology for this application and found that MaxLinear's AirPHY is the only one to combine the ultra-broadband speeds with the ability to penetrate almost any building to pair with our wireless power with the ability to penetrate both windows and solid walls," concluded Fang Ming Liang.

"Adding wireless power to our AirPHY technology is a great consumer feature and gives broadband service providers many new options for easily deploying 5G fixed wireless services," said Will Torgerson, Vice President and General Manager of MaxLinear's Broadband Group. "This joint solution is a big step toward AirPHY serving as a complete and competitive last mile access technology."