UMC works with university on WiMax technology

Chip maker teams with Taiwan university in RF receiver design

United Microelectronics Corp., the world's second-largest contract chip maker, teamed with a Taiwanese university to develop an RF (radio frequency) receiver design for WiMax.

The company, and the National Taiwan University, designed the RF receiver around UMC's 0.18 micron production technology, and plan to market it to companies that want to add a WiMax RF receiver to a chip.

The two have filed several patent applications for the new system which they expect to be granted next year. The design is the result of a two-year partnership between UMC and the National Taiwan University that began last year.

WiMax broadband wireless technology has been garnering attention recently as companies push the technology forward to boost the growth of wireless Internet access across vast areas.

Yesterday, Intel Corp.'s venture capital arm announced it made a $600 million in Clearwire Corp., a WiMax technology and hardware developer. It is believed to be the venture capital company's largest single investment. Motorola Inc. also invested in Clearwire, and bought its WiMax equipment subsidiary, NextNet Wireless.

Clearwire, based in Kirkland, Wash., provides wireless broadband services designed to work outside a home or office and even in a moving car.

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