Go/No-Go testing of VCO modulation RF transceivers through the delayed-RF setup

Erkan Acar, Sule Ozev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The increasing share of test and packaging as a percentage of the overall cost for RF transceivers necessitate, radically test new approaches to both wafer-level and final production testing. We present a new system-level test setup for voltage-controlled oscillator (VCO) modulating transceiver architectures that we call the delayed-RF setup, along with a novel, all-digital design-for-testability (DFT) modification that enables coverage of the most important system-level specifications. The delayed-RF setup can be used during wafer sort, thus preventing the packaging of nonfunctional dies. Based on this setup and the DFT technique, we present an automatic test development methodology for FM transceivers using frequency-domain signature analysis. We develop two distinct pass/fail criteria based on eigensignatures and envelope signatures and a test generation algorithm that aims at minimizing the required delay while attaining full coverage of target faults. We develop a fault injection and simulation platform for a VCO-modulation, low-IF transceiver architecture using MATLAB and behavioral models including nonideal response. The proposed methodology enables the automation of the test generation process, thus reduces the test development time. Experimental results have shown a 90% reduction in the required delay thereby reducing the cost of this test hardware item.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-46
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Design-for-testability (DFT)
  • Frequency-shift keying (FSK)
  • Loop-back
  • RF testing
  • Voltage-controlled oscillator (VCO) modulation architectures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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