A New Architecture For Low-Voltage Low-Phase-Noise High-Frequency CMOS LC Voltage-Controlled Oscillator
Lieu, Anthony D.
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Presented in this work is a novel design technique for a low-phase-noise high-frequency CMOS voltage-controlled oscillator. Phase noise is generated from electrical noise near DC, the oscillation frequency, and its harmonics. In CMOS technology, low-frequency flicker noise dominates the close-in phase noise of the VCO. The proposed technique minimizes the VCO phase noise by seeking to eliminate the effect of flicker noise on the phase noise. This is accomplished by canceling out the DC component of the impulse sensitivity function (ISF) corresponding to each flicker-noise source, thus preventing the up-conversion of low-frequency noise into phase noise. The proposed circuit topology is a modified version of the complementary cross-coupled transconductance VCO, where additional feedback paths are introduced such that a designer can choose the feedback ratios, transistor sizes, and bias voltages to achieve the previously mentioned design objectives. A step-by-step design algorithm is presented along with a MATLAB script to aid in the computation of the ISFs and the phase noise of the VCO. Using this algorithm, a 5-GHz VCO was designed and fabricated in a 0.18μm CMOS process, and then tested for comparison with simulated results.