Technical Features

October 2019
Shrink the 12V Battery by Half and Maintain Cold Crank?

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Advances in safety features, comfort and infotainment systems in automobiles are escalating power requirements, challenging power systems engineers to meet the growing power demands with restrictions in weight and space. Over the last decade, the typical 12V power requirements have increased from 1.2kW to 4kW co
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Date:
01/01/2022
Moving from Electromechanical to Solid-State in Relays and Circuit Breakers

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Figure 1: Contact wear in an electromechanical relay

As a mature technology, electromechanical relays and circuit breakers are well established, however they continue to suffer from some inherent weaknesses. Moving to solid-state technology can address these but introduces its own challenges. So, what is the right solution? In the movies, whenever the lights go
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Date:
10/31/2019
Bipolar Power Supplies Based on the Common Buck Converter

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Figure 1. Electrical schematic of the two terminal, bipolar, adjustable power supply.

A bench-top power supply (PS) tends to have an even number of terminals (ignoring the chassis port)—with one positive terminal and one negative terminal. Using a bench-top supply to produce a positive polarity output is easy: set the minus output to GND and the positive output voltage at the plus output. It is
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Date:
10/29/2019
GaN in Space

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Figure 1. Solar panels deployed on a satellite (Image courtesy of NASA)

The commercial space sector led by Space X and Blue Origin, plus companies like Northrop Grumman and Boeing, have given new life and accelerated NASA’s plans for the journey to Mars. The addition of the Artemis program, to establish a Moon base for the first leg of exploration and mining in the mid-2020s, will
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Date:
10/29/2019
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