BeammWave helps customers unlock the speed and connectivity promise of 5G with disruptive new technologies like digital beamforming and advanced antenna arrays packaged in a small, energy-efficient radio chip. BeammWave delivers solutions quickly while keeping its team small and eliminating unnecessary capital expenditures. Using tools offered by Cadence built on Amazon Web Services (AWS), BeammWave is able to meet its efficiency and time-to-market goals and pave the way for future technology breakthroughs.
Enabling the Technology that Enables 5G
5G promises to revolutionize the telecommunications industry with speeds 10 times faster than 4G at one-fiftieth the latency. That means quicker downloads, lower lag times, and greater support for innovations like connected cars, the industrial Internet of Things (IoT), and smart home devices.
5G’s performance gains rely on the use of ultrafast millimeter waves (mmWave), the high-frequency band of the electromagnetic spectrum. While mmWaves are ultrafast, they’re also ultra-short range, so they require advanced antenna technology to effectively direct their transmission between base station and receiver in a process known as beamforming. However, because traditional beamforming solutions rely on conventional analog radio architecture, they lack the speed and flexibility needed to deliver promised 5G performance. Analog architecture also takes up space and is difficult to fit in today’s ever-smaller handheld and IoT devices.
Digital beamforming, which uses algorithms and math to replace traditional time- and space-consuming analog approaches, has emerged as an alternative, and Swedish startup BeammWave saw an opportunity to become a disruptive market leader in this space. BeammWave’s digital 3×3 mm single radio chip with fully integrated antennas enables digital beamforming for 5G at a substantial size and cost reduction for applications ranging from phones to connected equipment and base stations. “We wanted to do something extremely advanced,” explained Stefan Svedberg, CEO at BeammWave. “And we wanted to do it as a startup with a very small team. We just needed the right digital tools to help us realize our vision.”
“Cadence has a complete offering that covers a wide range of critical tasks, all in a turnkey cloud-based design environment.”
- Per-Olof Brandt, CTO, BeammWave
Leveraging the Cloud for High Performance Computing
BeammWave discovered that the electronic design solutions offered by the AWS Partner Cadence, were the right fit for its innovative design. “Cadence has a complete offering that covers a wide range of critical tasks, from designing antennas to digital implementation, all in a turnkey cloud-based design environment,” noted Per-Olof Brandt, Chied Technology Officer at BeammWave.
To help companies like BeammWave meet the steady-state and peak high-performance computing (HPC) demands of a productive design infrastructure without compromising CapEx efficiency—something particularly important to a startup—Cadence offers Cadence CloudBurst, an EDA-optimized platform built on AWS. Designed for compute-intensive, all-cloud and hybrid-cloud environments, CloudBurst provides fast and easy access to Cadence design tools and industry-leading process design kits (PDKs) in an ISO security-certified platform built on AWS. “By working with AWS, we’ve been able to provide nearly unlimited resources to our customers, as well as a wider range of machine variety to better meet their needs at every stage of the design process,” said Peter Hansson, Senior Account Executive at Cadence. “Because Cadence CloudBurst is a ready-to-use platform and our experts handle all the required integrations, the solution was up and running at BeammWave in only two days.”
Empowering Designers to Design
BeammWave uses Cadence tools throughout the design process, from simulations that explore how metal structures transmit radiation through the air, chip design for mmWave amplification, and assessments of digital functionality to preparation for manufacturing. “These are very complicated tasks, and Cadence is the leader in this space,” said Brandt.
Because Cadence provides all the tools BeammWave needs in a single environment, BeammWave engineers can spend their time designing rather than moving between environments or learning multiple toolsets. “Without Cadence, we would have to have more resources to integrate all the different tools we’d need. Our design process would definitely be less efficient,” noted Brandt.
“Cadence helps us in all dimensions. We’re able to do all these advanced things as a startup with a very small team, and Cadence enables that for us.”
- Stefan Svedberg, CEO, BeammWave
Driving Resource-Efficient Scalability and Security
By running Cadence tools in CloudBurst, BeammWave gains efficiencies beyond those offered by an integrated toolset. As a fully managed solution, CloudBurst frees BeammWave from the need to manage or maintain its cloud infrastructure, saving precious resources that can be funneled back into development and design.
CloudBurst supports AWS High Performance Compute instance families, including Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), which BeammWave uses. Amazon EC2 gives BeammWave access to the on-demand infrastructure and capacity it needs to run computationally intense workloads and easily scale compute power without additional
Because CloudBurst is built on AWS, it provides a stable environment that also speeds development efforts. “Having a stable environment means we can be more efficient every day,” Brandt noted. “We don’t have to spend time trying to fix infrastructure issues, which helps us focus on design and go to market faster.” Further, Cadence has invested in AWS and third-party security services and adopted industry best practices to attain ISO 27001 and 27017 security certifications for the benefit of its customers. Without having to devote resources to cloud security, BeammWave can focus on what it does best: designing and building leading-edge solutions for 5G applications.
Building for 5G and Beyond
Going forward, BeammWave sees the opportunity to grow with Cadence by incorporating more Cadence tools in its cloud-based development efforts. “Right now, we use only a fraction of the tools that Cadence offers,” Brandt said. “As we expand our business, we won’t need to go to other providers. We’ll always be using Cadence in one way or another.”
“Cadence helps us in all dimensions,” concluded Svedberg. “What we’re doing is really at the forefront of what’s happening in telecom and cellular right now. We’re able to do all these advanced things as a startup with a very small team, and Cadence enables that for us.”.
BeammWave is technology startup based in Sweden that delivers ready-to-integrate, single-chip antenna solutions using digital beamforming to unlock the promise of 5G for mobile phones, IoT devices, and other applications.
Cadence is a leading Electronic Design Automation (EDA) and Intelligent System Design provider delivering hardware, software, and IP that turn design concepts into reality.
Published June 2022