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CFL drivers offer quick warm-up, deep dimming

Posted: 03 Nov 2009     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:CFL driver  compact fluorescent lamp  power IC 

NXP Semiconductors introduces UBA2028 high-voltage power IC that drives dimmable compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). The driver enables lighting manufacturers to create high-quality CFLs that offer quick warm-up and dimming capabilities down to 10 per cent of full light intensity. It claims the highest level of integration available on the market, enabling more compact designs, highly efficient power conversion, and extended CFL lifetimes beyond 15,000 hours.

The UBA2028 is a 600V power IC that can drive and control dimmable CFL applications up to 21W, and features 3Ω integrated switches. The IC includes half-bridge power circuit, dimming function, high voltage level shift circuit, oscillator function, lamp voltage monitor, current control function, timer function, and detection and protection circuits.

Other key features of the UBA2028 include two internal 600V, 3Ω (max) MOSFETs; support up to 280mA for steady state currents; support up to 1.5A for ignition currents; adjustable preheat time and current; advanced dimming (Phase-cut and 1-10V); current-controlled operation; single ignition attempt. It also offers adaptive non-overlap time control and integrated bootstrap diodes; integrated high-voltage level-shift function; capacitive mode protection for lamp failure detection; and power-down in case of lamp failure.

The market for energy-efficient CFLs is expected to grow significantly, as governments around the world ban incandescent light bulbs, and households and businesses take advantage of the energy savings offered by CFLs, which use up to 80 per cent less electricity compared to incandescents. Datapoint Research predicts that the number of CFL units sold annually will reach 500 crore by 2012. However, only a fraction of CFL bulbs sold today meet consumers' expectations in terms of quality, functionality and performance. In Europe, this has led to stricter requirements for CFL product labelling; in the United States, this has led to initiatives such as "Super CFL." In both regions, new specifications are emerging for high-performance, high-quality compact fluorescents with better colour light, faster start-up times, better dimming and longer life.

All of NXP's CFL driver ICs, including the UBA2028, have been designed in anticipation of the shift towards higher-quality compact fluorescents. By adopting IC solutions to replace standard discrete implementations in electronic ballasts, manufacturers can address these stricter requirements and deliver more consumer-friendly CFLs with better quality light, faster warm-up and longer product lifetimes for lower total cost of ownership. The NXP UBA2028 introduces "true dimming" capabilities—for a smoother dimming experience without flickering and noise. Further, its high level of integration enables more compact CFL sizes that can fit smaller lampshade designs than ever before.

"Consumers have been understandably frustrated with the quality of light available from most CFLs on the market today. With the UBA2028, NXP is helping to change the way people perceive and experience compact fluorescent lighting," said Jacques le Berre, director of marketing and business development for lighting solutions, NXP. "By enabling 'true dimming,' we are enabling lighting manufacturers to raise the bar and create higher-quality CFLs that are indistinguishable from incandescent bulbs. The net result is that consumers who want to take advantage of the tremendous energy savings offered by CFLs will no longer have to sacrifice the quality of light they enjoy in their homes."

With the SO20L package, the chip offers reduced board space with a typical Rth(j-a) of 75K/W. It enables extended lifetime and lower total cost. Fully released and available, the NXP UBA2028 comes with a complete application kit including samples, datasheet, application note, and demonstration board.

Get related application notes and technical articles on Power Design India.

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