L- And X-Band Dual-Frequency Synthesizer Utilizing Lithium Niobate RF-MEMS and Open-Loop Frequency Dividers

Ali Kourani, Yansong Yang, Songbin Gong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article presents an 8.6-GHz oscillator utilizing the third-order antisymmetric overtone ( A}_{{3} ) in a lithium niobate (LiNbO3) radio frequency microelectromechanical systems (RF-MEMS) resonator. The oscillator consists of an acoustic resonator in a closed loop with cascaded RF tuned amplifiers (TAs) built on Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) RF general purpose (GP) 65-nm complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS). The TAs bandpass response, set by on-chip inductors, satisfies Barkhausen's oscillation conditions for A}_{{3} while suppressing the fundamental and higher order resonances. Two circuit variations are implemented. The first is an 8.6-GHz standalone oscillator with a source-follower buffer for direct 50- Ω -based measurements. The second is an oscillator-divider chain using an on-chip three-stage divide-by-two frequency divider for a 1.1-GHz output. The standalone oscillator achieves a measured phase noise of -56, -113, and -135 dBc/Hz at 1 kHz, 100 kHz, and 1 MHz offsets from an 8.6-GHz output while consuming 10.2 mW of dc power. The oscillator also attains a figure-of-merit of 201.6 dB at 100-kHz offset, surpassing the state-of-the-art (SoA) oscillators-based electromagnetic (EM) and RF-MEMS. The oscillator-divider chain produces a phase noise of -69.4 and -147 dBc/Hz at 1 kHz and 1 MHz offsets from a 1075-MHz output while consuming 12 mW of dc power. Its phase noise performance also surpasses the SoA L -band phase-locked loops (PLLs). With further optimization, this work can enable low-power multistandard wireless transceivers featuring high speed, high sensitivity, and high selectivity in small-form factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number9312619
Pages (from-to)1994-2004
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021


  • 5G
  • lithium niobate (LiNbO)
  • microelectromechanical systems (MEMS)
  • oscillator
  • overtone
  • phase noise
  • synthesizers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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