Lime backs Lattice for software defined radio board

Technology News |
By Nick Flaherty

Lime Microsystems in the UK is preparing to launch a successor to the popular LimeSDR Mini open-source software defined radio using an FPGA from Lattice Semiconductor.

The new version, to be launched on Crowd Supply, uses a larger field-programmable gate array (FPGA) for projects looking to perform operations on-device and ease the load on the host processor.

The original LimeSDR Mini launched in 2017 as a more compact and lower-cost alternative to the LimeSDR USB, based on the same LMS7002M field-programmable radio-frequency (FPRF) chip but with only single-channel full-duplex operation rather than dual-channel full-duplex operation.

The LimeSDR Mini 2.0 retains the same LMS7002M that handles a range of 10MHz to 3.5GHz with 40MHz RF bandwidth but moves from the Intel MAX 10 FPGA to a Lattice Semiconductor ECP5m  increasing the number of programmable logic gates on-board from 16k to 44k.

This allows a range of workloads to run directly on-device by customising the open-source gateware that is available to all users. This includes adding signal detection capabilities, noise-reduction processing, or filtering.

Elsewhere, the specifications of the new board remain the same – matching feature-for-feature the radio functionality of the original LimeSDR Mini, including its support for operation between 10 MHz and 3.5 GHz, full-duplex reception and transmission, 40 MHz of radio-frequency bandwidth, and a USB 3.0 interface to a host device.

The project is on Crowd Supply.

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