Digital Power by Ericsson
Steve Taranovich - December 12, 2012
I recently had a really informative call with Patrick Le Fevre, Marketing and Communication Director at Ericsson Power Modules. It had been a while since I had been involved with Ericsson modules, actually not since my days with TI as Global Technical Account Manager for all the Alcatel-Lucent design facilities. Ericsson was always a well-respected and formidable competitor at that time in the first 10 years of the new Millenium.
Le Fevre told me that they had struggled to find a DSP from 2000 to 2004 and then also began to work with Intersil a bit and in 2008 had their first generation digital power solution with a TI solution in it.
Since then Ericsson has progressed tremendously in the digital power arena –their Digital Power Compendium is the go-to place to learn about Digital Power with a great assortment of informative white papers that can be downloaded.
Le Fevre mentioned a very appropriate anecdote he encountered in 2011. He received a phone call from a US military-oriented company and the person said, “Do you want me to lose my job?” This fellow’s manager had read about digital power and asked him—the “power guy” about it.
Ericsson has made a concerted effort to spread the knowledge about the benefits of digital power, as a matter of fact, someone wanted to know why Ericsson had so many data sheets on CD and hard copy---most unusual for modern day access with the ubiquity of the internet---except if you live and work in Africa and other areas that have no internet access, but have a hunger for design and development technical information!
So, here are some recent accomplishments in digital power by Ericsson:
- BMR456 and BMR457 (FRIDA II Family of Advanced Bus Converters) – Which integrate the new Ericsson DC/DC Optimizer firmware and are ideal for Dynamic Bus Voltage operation;
- Digital Power Compendium – Perhaps the industry's most complete collection of papers on digital power;
Ericsson Dynamic Bus Voltage can deliver significant energy savings
Ericsson Digital Power Designer – A software tool that provides board-power designers with the ability to configure, implement and monitor power-conversion devices from a single unit to a complete system.
I think that Digital Power is here to stay. Its obvious advantages of dynamic load control, parameter monitoring capability with intelligent decision-making capabilities, at a minimum, make digital power an excellent choice in power management designs. The cost and size barriers have been overcome, so there are no longer any real drawbacks to designing with this powerful technology---only great technical benefits that can enhance any design.