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Digital power controllers tout high efficiency

Posted: 19 Sep 2008     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:digital power control  digital loop control  power delivery solutions  Digital-DC power conversion 

digital power control

Fairchild Semiconductor has released its first point-of-load digital power control and management products for communication and computing applications that address Energy Star and Climate Savers Computing efficiency guidelines. Fairchild says that these products combine digital loop control with highly integrated power management capabilities to offer flexible, easy-to-design power delivery solutions and high efficiency over the entire range from light to full load.

Incorporating Digital-DC power conversion architecture, these products provide flexible power-stage options and optimise efficiency as system conditions change, claims the company. This results in a full-load efficiency improvement up to three per cent and a light-load efficiency increase greater than 15 per cent in typical applications, reducing peak power dissipation by up to 20 per cent. This significantly increases the overall performance of communication, embedded computing and storage applications.

Faichild claims that the FD2004, FD2004-01 and FD2006 digital power controllers and the FD1505 digital power support driver are universal power building blocks. The controllers operate with a wide input voltage range from as low as 3.0V up to 14V to control output voltages as low as 0.54V and as high as 5.5V. They can also be used alone or connected in parallel to address a wide variety of load currents.

The FD2006 integrates a controller with 3A MOSFET drivers that support loads in excess of 40A with no external driver needed. The controller-only FD2004 can interface with external driver/MOSFET ICs and power train modules to provide power stage design flexibility. Like the FD2004, the FD2004-01 is also a controller-only solution with the added benefit of the industry's best DC output voltage setpoint accuracy (±0.2 per cent). These products deliver accurate power to ever-increasing voltage regulation accuracy requirements of today's high-performance embedded processors and ASICs. All of these controllers include on-board I2C/SMBus compliant serial ports and support the industry-standard Power Management Bus (PMBus) command set.

The FD1505, a high-speed, high-current synchronous N-Channel synchronous-buck MOSFET driver, is specifically designed for use with the FD2004 and FD2004-01. The FD1505 has dual PWM inputs that take advantage of the dynamic dead-time optimisation from the controllers to maximise power conversion efficiency. The device combines +5A/-4A low-side drive with ±3A high-side drive and up to 7.5V gate drive supply input to enable high efficiency at high step-down ratios and high switching frequencies. The FD1505 also provides an adjustable gate drive current feature, which allows configurations of 50 per cent or 100 per cent of its full rated drive current. This feature optimises performance across a wide range of input/output voltage and output current requirements.

These devices use lead-free terminals and have been characterised for moisture sensitivity in accordance with the Pb-free reflow requirements of the joint IPC/JEDEC standard J-STD-020. All of Fairchild's products are designed to meet the requirements of the European Union's Directive on the restriction of the use of certain substances (RoHS).

The Fairchild Digital-DC controllers are packaged in a 5 x 5 mm 32-lead QFN and 6 x 6 mm 36-lead QFN packages with prices starting from US RS.126.43 ($2.95) each in 1,000-unit quantities. The FD1505 is packaged in a 3 x 3 mm DFN package starting at Rs.30.43 ($0.71) in 1,000-unit quantities. Samples are available immediately with production quantities in 12 weeks.

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