Short-range radio startup appoints CEO

Business news |
By Peter Clarke

The company was founded in 2016 to develop a specialized low-power, short range wireless transceiver aimed at the Internet of Things. The company was co-founded by Frederic Nabki, a professor of Electrical Engineering at the École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS) and who serves the company as CTO.

Fares Mubarak, CEO of Spark Microsystems.

Mubarak will now manage all aspects of the business with a view to releasing its wireless technology to customers in 2019. He has more than 30 years of management experience spanning semiconductor design, software development, operations, sales, marketing, applications, and EDA.

During his career Mubarak was 18 years at Actel Corp., an FPGA vendor that was acquired by Microsemi Corp. where he rose to the position of senior vice president of marketing and engineering. Prior to his time at Actel, Mubarak held various management and engineering roles at AMD and Samsung Semiconductor. It is notable that John East, retired CEO of Actel, serves on the board of Spark Microsystems.

“The ultra-low power Spark radio will usher in the next generation of easy to deploy and maintain IoT sensor networks, enabling a new class of battery-less and extra-long battery life applications, while providing order of magnitude improvements in latency and data rate,” said Mubarak in a statement issued by Spark Microsystems.

Next: MEMS used in the radio

Spark’s innovation is to operate its radio circuits in pulses of about 50 microseconds. The radio is designed as a short-range replacement for Bluetooth and similar radios in the 3 to 6GHz part of the electromagnetic spectrum. It has a range of up to about 50 meters, but can achieve 35 times better energy efficiency than BLE and transmits data with a latency that is 60 times shorter than BLE while supporting a faster data rate of 10Mbits per second, the company claims. The extreme efficiency extends battery life but also enables wireless devices such as sensors to be operated from harvested energy and without a battery. The pulsing operation also offers better security as short-intercal signals are harder to intercept.

Related links and articles:

Spark radio white paper

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