Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Computer Engineering

Major Professor

Syed K Islam

Committee Members

Gregory Peterson, Jeremy Holleman


This thesis presents the low power design of a 916MHz Gilbert cell mixer and a Class-A power amplifier for the Bioluminescent Bioreporter Integrated Circuit (BBIC) transmitter.

There has been increased use in the man-made sensors which can operate in environments unsuitable for humans and at locations remote from the observer. One such sensor is the bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit (BBIC). Bioluminescent bioreporters are the bacteria that are genetically engineered in order to achieve bioluminescence when in contact with the target substance. The BBIC has bioreporters placed on a single CMOS integrated circuit (IC) that detects the bioluminescence, performs the signal processing and finally transmits the senor data. The wireless transmission allows for remote sensing by eliminating the need of costly cabling to communicate with the sensor.

The wireless data transmission is performed by the transmitter system. The digital data stream generated by the signal processing circuitry of the BBIC is ASK modulated for transmission. The direct conversion transmitter used in this design includes a PLL, Mixer and a Power amplifier. The PLL is used to generate a 916MHz frequency signal. This signal is mixed with the digital data signal generated from the signal processing circuitry of the BBIC. A double balanced Gilbert cell is used to perform the mixing operation. The mixer output is applied to a power amplifier which provides amplification of the RF output power. The Gilbert cell mixer and the power amplifier have been implemented in 90nm CMOS process available through MOSIS.

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