Design Con 2015

Power Management

Steve Taranovich
Editor
In-depth technical information, product advancements, and industry news for engineers responsible for designing, specifying, or selecting power sources for electronics applications. Topics include power supplies, power management and regulation components, batteries, digital power, and alternative energy technology.

Vote for the Best Products of 2014

At DesignCon 2015, the Best in Design & Test Awards will be awarded in the ChipHead Theater at 5PM on Wednesday January 28th, 2015 in the Santa Clara Convention Center at DesignCon 2015, please cast your vote now! Read More...

See the details with an HD thermal imager

Fluke's TiX1000 series of high-definition thermal imaging cameras let you see temperature on circuit components, wires, even whole cities. Read More...

Vote for the Engineer of the Year

DesignCon2015 has announced the finalists for the Engineer of the Year Award (sponsored by National Instruments). The award includes a $10,000 grant that will be given out at DesignCon. Read More...

Ericsson ATCA Power Modules in regulated quarter-brick

Ericsson introduced the industry’s first 580W high-power DC/DC intermediate bus converter (IBC) module in a quarter-brick module targeted for Advanced Telecommunications Computing Architecture (ATCA) applications, which is a solidly established and leading high-availability architecture for the telecommunications market. Read More...

Book excerpt: Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization, CHAPTER 4, Part 2 of 2

This excerpt is from Chapter 4 of Sanjaya Maniktala’s book Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization. (See my review of this book on EDN) This is the second part. Part 1 was published a while ago. Read More...

White Paper: Achieving “Charge Quality” for lead acid batteries in industrial motive applications

Delta-Q Technologies’ success as an industrial battery charger supplier to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) has been built on understanding the charging requirements of lead acid batteries. Read More...

Temperature-to-Bits converter helps solve challenges in sensor measurement

Although temperature is a fundamental aspect of our lives, it is difficult to measure accurately. Before the era of modern electronics, Galileo invented a rudimentary thermometer capable of detecting temperature changes. Two hundred years later, Seebeck discovered the thermocouple, a device capable of generating a voltage as a function of temperature gradients in dissimilar metals. Read More...

Envelope tracking makes CMOS PAs possible in 4G smartphones

A look at how to improve the efficiency of CMOS PAs using envelope tracking. Product data includes performance testing using products from Nujira and Peregrine Semiconductor. Read More...

Basics of the IEEE Standardization process

Here's a look at the seven steps in the production of a typical IEEE standard. Read More...

Book excerpt: Power over Ethernet Interoperability, CHAPTER 2, Part 2

This is Part 2 of Chapter 2 in which Part 1 was published a while ago from the book "Power over Ethernet Interoperability." Read More...

Book excerpt: Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization, CHAPTER 4, Part 1 of 2

This excerpt is from Chapter 4 of Sanjaya Maniktala’s book Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization Read More...

Sleep easy with this desk fan speed reducer

This innovative AC motor control skips cycles. Read More...

Obscure AC line connectors challenge designers, consumers

Basic plugs and connectors are standardized, but there are many specialized ones you'll run into that are a problem when they need to be replaced. Read More...

Profiles in Design: Alex Lidow, Ph.D.

“For the first time in 60 years we have a technology that is both higher performance and lower cost than silicon.”—Alex Lidow Read More...

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Sleep easy with this desk fan speed reducer

This innovative AC motor control skips cycles. Read More...

LTC Design Note: Versatile industrial power supply takes high voltage input and yields from eight 1A to two 4A outputs

This ultra-flexible, highly-featured switching regulator IC might be perfect for your next complex and/or industrial design. Read More...

Flyback switcher works down to 1.1V, flashes HBLEDs

Check out this DI if you need voltage step-up from a single cell. Read More...

Load switch with self-resetting circuit breaker

Protect both load and driver with this elegant little Design Idea. Read More...

LTC Design Note: High performance single phase DC/DC controller with power system management

This DC-DC controller incorporates power system management and high-precision data converters. Read More...

Improve efficiency of low-cost switcher

Reduce losses by over 30%, and improve Vin(min) too, on a 34063-based or similar switcher. Read More...

Variable HV power supply employs photovoltaic optocoupler

This unusual topology saved the day when a higher-voltage variable supply was needed. Read More...

Low-side switch with fast turn-off for inductive loads

Ditch the freewheeling diode if you want fast turn off. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: Driving & protecting inverter IGBTs

A special purpose optocoupler can solve your IGBT gate-drive and fault-feedback needs. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: Reduce IGBT drive cost and space

Use an application-specific optocoupler for an elegant solution to IGBT drive and monitoring. Read More...

LTC Design Note: 65V 500mA step-down converter fits automotive and industrial applications

This switcher is happy to drop a 60V input all the way down to 0.8V. Read More...

Avoid problems with multiple DC-DC converters

Improve DC-DC converter design and application, and avoid potential problems with this synchronization circuit. Read More...

LTC Design Notes: Micropower Isolated Flyback Converter with Input Voltage Range from 6V to 100V

A tiny, integrated flyback converter requires minimal support components. Read More...

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Supplies deliver up to 480 W on DIN rails

To meet the need for DIN rail-mount power sources in industrial, building automation, and process-control applications, TDK-Lambda offers the DRF120-480 series of compact power supplies, which operate with an efficiency of up to 94%, while providing 120 W to 480 W of output power. Read More...

Eighth-brick converters accept up to 75-V input

Joining the recently announced PKU5510E, PKE5000, and PKE3000 series, the PKB5000W series of open-frame, isolated eighth-brick DC/DC power modules from Ericsson delivers up to 120 W of output power within a wide input-voltage range of 18 VDC to 75 VDC. Read More...

80-V LDO regulator withstands military temperatures

Linear Technology has released a military-grade version of its LT3014B, a high-voltage, micropower LDO regulator that has an adjustable input voltage range of 3 V to 80 V and is capable of delivering 20 mA of output current. Read More...

See the details with an HD thermal imager

Fluke's TiX1000 series of high-definition thermal imaging cameras let you see temperature on circuit components, wires, even whole cities. Read More...

Intelligent four-channel LED driver offers design flexibility

Code Mercenaries has introduced a 4-channel, intelligent, programmable LED driver which has I2C, DMX512, and DALI interfaces. Read More...

Two-string HB automotive LED driver provides 10000:1 dimming ratio

For use in automotive display backlights, automotive lighting applications and LCD backlights, Maxim has posted detail of the MAX16838B which it says is the only-available 2-String HB LED driver providing 10000:1 dimming ratio. Read More...

Triple LED controllers for rear lights

The IC family E522.80/81/82/83 from Elmos AG is an LED controller device, designed for applications like automotive rear lights. The devices offer three channels each, with a maximum current of 140 mA. Read More...

12-V motor driver family simplifies tuning

Adaptive current regulation and enhanced fault protection help systems spin stepper motors smoothly and reliably; TI has added a 12-V motor driver family that claims to reduces spin-up time to seconds and simplifies tuning stepper and brushed DC motors. Read More...

Dual MOSFET squeezes into PQFN package

International Rectifier’s IRFH4257D is a 25-V dual N-channel power MOSFET housed in a 4x5-mm PQFN power-block package aimed at 12-V input DC/DC synchronous buck applications, such as telecom equipment, servers, graphic cards, and computers. Read More...

Ericsson ATCA Power Modules in regulated quarter-brick

Ericsson introduced the industry’s first 580W high-power DC/DC intermediate bus converter (IBC) module in a quarter-brick module targeted for Advanced Telecommunications Computing Architecture (ATCA) applications, which is a solidly established and leading high-availability architecture for the telecommunications market. Read More...

Step-down switching regulator minimizes EMI/EMC

Leveraging Linear Technology’s Silent Switcher architecture and spread- spectrum frequency modulation, the LT8640 synchronous step-down switching regulator reduces EMI/EMC emissions by more than 25 dB—even with switching frequencies in excess of 2 MHz—enabling the part to easily pass automotive CISPR25, Class 5 peak limits. Read More...

Energy-storage capacitors conserve space

Offering designers enhanced charge and discharge performance for energy harvesting and power-line backup applications, the Vishay BCcomponents 196 HVC ENYCAP series of hybrid energy-storage capacitors from Vishay Intertechnology provides energy densities of 9 Ws/g to 13 Ws/g in cases with profiles as low as 2.5 mm. Read More...

Ultrathin 3A microModule Regulator

Sometimes circuit densities get so crowded that there is nowhere else to fit any components (Power in particular) except to be mounted on the backside of the PCB Read More...

Buck-boost controller works with 60-V input

Based on a four-switch single-inductor architecture, the LT3790 synchronous buck-boost DC/DC controller from Linear Technology accommodates an input of 4.7 V to 60 V and delivers up to 250 W of continuous power for use in a variety of automotive and industrial applications. Read More...

800-W high-voltage units join programmable-supply line

TDK-Lambda has expanded its Z+ series of programmable DC power supplies with the addition of 800-W models that deliver output voltages of up to 650 VDC. Read More...

Tiny pin-shaped Lithium Ion battery

Panasonic Corporation has developed a pin-shaped Lithium Ion battery Read More...

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Teardown: Cell-phone charger: nice idea done right

The Mophie juice pack powerstation mini smartphone and USB-device battery charger demonstrates the ability to provide more than twice the battery life to your smartphone while still keeping a low-profile shape that slips right into your pocket. Read More...

Teardown: Gigabit Ethernet switch shut down by lightning strike

A lightning bolt-generated EMP may have entered through the switch's port(s) and KO'd the controller inside. What are your theories? Read More...

Teardown: Samsung Galaxy S4

TechInsights examines the innards of Samsung's latest and greatest smartphone. Read More...

Cell-phone charger: nice idea, bad implementation

Now and again you come across a device that’s so simple, useful, and functional that you’re glad to add it to your already-overladen workbag; that is, until it breaks, for the dumbest of design reasons. Read More...

Teardown: The power inverter - from sunlight to power grid

This teardown of a solar inverter card traces the path of harvested DC power from the photovoltaic panel, through boost conversion, power inverter and massive filtering of the created AC power signal required by the power grid. Surrounded by monitoring and microcontroller magic along with safety standard adherence, we uncover the mysteries of solar energy harvesting electronics. Read More...

Evaluate your application's energy-harvesting vibrational profile with a Slam Stick

To know whether your application is suitable for vibrational energy harvesting, you must determine its vibrational profile. Mide Technology's Slam Stick data logger and open-source software can ease your profiling task. Read More...

What's inside a smart meter? iFixit tears it down

When iFixit's Kyle Wiens had the opportunity to tear down an Elster smart meter, he jumped at it—not to come up with a repair manual but to evaluate the health and safety issues that seem to surround the utilities’ installation of smart meters. Read More...

Simple battery technology packs in more features with complex chemistries

The basic components are the same across all rechargeable lithium-ion cells, the workhorses of portable energy storage. Read More...

Way, way off the grid: Powering the Phoenix Mars lander

Prying Eyes: An inside look at the power-generation, -regulation, and -delivery system for the Phoenix Mars lander. Read More...

Microfuel cell enables ubiquitous computing

Prying Eyes examines a fuel-cell-based power pack for handheld devices, such as cell phones and MP3 players. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Book excerpt: Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization, CHAPTER 4, Part 2 of 2

This excerpt is from Chapter 4 of Sanjaya Maniktala’s book Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization. (See my review of this book on EDN) This is the second part. Part 1 was published a while ago. Read More...

White Paper: Achieving “Charge Quality” for lead acid batteries in industrial motive applications

Delta-Q Technologies’ success as an industrial battery charger supplier to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) has been built on understanding the charging requirements of lead acid batteries. Read More...

Temperature-to-Bits converter helps solve challenges in sensor measurement

Although temperature is a fundamental aspect of our lives, it is difficult to measure accurately. Before the era of modern electronics, Galileo invented a rudimentary thermometer capable of detecting temperature changes. Two hundred years later, Seebeck discovered the thermocouple, a device capable of generating a voltage as a function of temperature gradients in dissimilar metals. Read More...

Book excerpt: Power over Ethernet Interoperability, CHAPTER 2, Part 2

This is Part 2 of Chapter 2 in which Part 1 was published a while ago from the book "Power over Ethernet Interoperability." Read More...

Book excerpt: Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization, CHAPTER 4, Part 1 of 2

This excerpt is from Chapter 4 of Sanjaya Maniktala’s book Switching Power Supply, Design and Optimization Read More...

Death to "half-power handsets"

Here are the technical reasons why handset designers and RF engineers should be turning the transmit power up, not down, to extend battery life and optimize LTE network performance. Read More...

GaN: The dawn of a new era?

As designs become more complex, engineers are turning to newer semiconductor materials, such as GaN. But what exactly can it be used for and what are its limitations? Read More...

Book excerpt: Power over Ethernet Interoperability, CHAPTER 2, Part 1

Sanjaya Maniktala’s book review appeared on EDN a while ago and I am posting this chapter excerpt (In two parts) along with a second one shortly from two of the key chapters that will give you a sense of the importance of this technical gem. Read More...

Book Review: Power over Ethernet Interoperability

Power over Ethernet (PoE) was a solution to a problem in Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems. Read More...

The benefits of the coupled inductor technology

Coupled inductors are often used in multiphase topologies to take advantage of the current-ripple cancellation from magnetic coupling between the phases. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Vote for the Engineer of the Year

DesignCon2015 has announced the finalists for the Engineer of the Year Award (sponsored by National Instruments). The award includes a $10,000 grant that will be given out at DesignCon. Read More...

Obscure AC line connectors challenge designers, consumers

Basic plugs and connectors are standardized, but there are many specialized ones you'll run into that are a problem when they need to be replaced. Read More...

My long-running affection for heat sinks

As a bulk-metal component, the heat sink is the opposite of the million-gate, submicron-process IC or a power-handling discrete device; despite this obvious difference, it is often critical to the viability and long life of those more glamorous active components. Read More...

Digital Power chat session on Planet Analog November 19, 2014

Power management is a vital part to every design. Having the best power supply for your system ensures a robust design as well as a design that will perform at its highest levels. Read More...

California shines a light on LED lamp efficiency opportunities

Efficiency opportunities and proposing regulations for small diameter directional lamps and general service LED lamps. Read More...

Architects of Modern Power (AMP) consortium issues first standards

I introduced the AMP consortium in my previous blog and right on the heels of that news comes their first standards for digital point-of-load (POL) and advanced bus dc-dc converters with the goal of common mechanical and electrical specifications for the development of advanced power conversion technology for distributed power systems. Read More...

Testing times for design engineers

Characterising subsystems containing high-power devices switching at megahertz/gigahertz frequencies with very fast edges is stretching the capabilities of measurement equipment, and we all have to become test engineers to understand what's inside the box, the sources of errors, and how to use DSOs, VNAs, TDRs and spectrum analysers properly. Read More...

Well marked yet mysterious coin cell teaches a small lesson

Sometimes what you think will be an easy problem to solve, especially with the power of Internet search, turns out to lead to a dead end; the constant lesson and reminder is "don't assume anything." Read More...

Making things perfectly clear

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently distributed a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) for Test Procedures for External Power Supplies (EPSs). Read More...

Cree recent surge of SiC Power MOSFETs intros will help Power designers

I have noticed a recent surge of activity by Cree with their SiC line of power MOSFETs over the last two months as well as a new family of 50V GaN HEMT die. Read More...

Simpler superconducting promised by nanowire device

MIT researchers have developed a new circuit design that could make simple superconducting devices much cheaper to manufacture. Read More...

DesignCon Awards nominations open

DesignCon’s Best in Design & Test Awards and the DesignCon Engineer of the Year Award recognize the best of the best in engineering and new product advancements at the chip, board, or system level, with a special emphasis on signal integrity and power integrity. Read More...

Three digital power-houses create a new consortium

The founding members of AMP ---CUI, Ericsson Power Modules and Murata -- have formalized a cooperation that has been in place for some time between these power giants. Read More...

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