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Isolators replace optocouplers, 16 devices

Posted: 17 Dec 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:bidirectional  isolators  I2C  interface 

Texas Instruments Inc. launches the ISO1540 and ISO1541 bidirectional isolators that are compatible with I2C interfaces. Said to use 38 per cent less power than competitive devices, the ICs take the place of 16 or more discrete devices usually needed to isolate the I2C signal in industrial applications.

The isolators are said to offer better transient immunity and faster switching times than optocouplers, and are suited for power supplies, networking, telecommunications, Power over Ethernet (PoE) and battery management systems.

They use a capacitive isolation technology with a silicon dioxide (SiO2) barrier that separates logic input and output buffers. This extends the lifetime of the isolators by more than three times compared to optocouplers or magnetic isolators.

The ISO1540 provides two isolated bidirectional channels for clock and data lines for use in applications that have multiple masters. The ISO1541 includes a bidirectional data and a unidirectional clock channel for use in single-master applications.

The devices use a maximum current of less than 8.5mA at 5V, or up to 38 per cent compared to competitive ICs, cutting heat generation in industrial applications. Their maximum propagation delay is 62ns, 52 per cent better than competitive ICs, enabling faster data transfer. Also, typical transient immunity of ±50kV/µs provides better reliability in harsh environments.

The devices employ an offset configuration that prevents device latch-up and ensures reliable operation to achieve isolated bidirectional communications.

To ease product development with the isolators, TI offers the ISO1540EVM. It can be ordered for Rs.2,592.59 ($49).

The ISO1540 and ISO1541 are available in industry-standard, 8-pin SOIC packages, priced at Rs.105.82 ($2) and Rs.95.24 ($1.80), respectively, in 1,000-unit quantities.

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