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Technical Features

May 2020
Extremely Compact Isolated Auxiliary Supply for SiC-MOSFET Gate Driver

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Figure 1: Topology of a SiC-MOSFET half-bridge with highlighted parasitic inductances

With the increasing spread of high-voltage power semiconductor components build with silicon carbide (SiC) technology, which operate at switching frequencies above 100 kHz, the requirements for their gate control are becoming more and more demanding. Besides the bipolar, positive and negative driving voltages fo
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Date:
09/30/2020
Power Is in the Air

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Figure 1 – CISPR 25 Class 5 Initial Testing 100 KHz to 30 MHz

Recently, the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC or "Qi") technology won the technology battle and is now the low power standard for handsets. This fact was further cemented with implementation of the Qi technology by all leading worldwide handset makers. Car models, with wireless charging available, is now at
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Date:
05/04/2020
Working with High Voltage Renewable Energy Sources

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Table 1: Switch states for a 3L-NPC phase leg

The energy landscape is shifting, with growing concern over the use of carbon-based fuels and greater momentum behind making the most of renewables.  Photovoltaic (PV) panels and wind turbines are a common site across the landscape and along coastlines.  Large renewable installations require higher op
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Date:
05/04/2020
Thermoelectric Coolers Help Machine Vision Systems Look Good
Machine vision technology has traditionally been used for vision inspection, quality control, robotics, wire bonding and down-hole applications where machine vision systems obtain data from analyzing images of a specific process or activity. Leveraging advanced hardware and software systems, machine vision technology al
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Date:
05/04/2020

USB Type C Power Delivery and Protection

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Figure 1. USB-C Enables Compact, Slim Industrial Designs while Supporting Various
Power and Connectivity Standards

USB Type C adoption in notebooks, tablets, and smartphones continues to increase due to the features it offers. It is an upgrade to existing USB standards like USB 2.0 and 3.1 while also serving as a replacement for standards like Thunderbolt and Displaypor
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Date:
05/04/2020
Can We Attain Better Audio Amplification? Yes, We GaN!

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Figure 1: Basic block diagram of a Class D amplifier design

Audio is a complex application space, especially when operating in the realms of the audiophile. The highest-end audio equipment comes with a hefty price tag and audio amplifiers of differing types attract followings of users who believe their choice best reproduces a true interpretation of the original recording being played. While the merits and weaknesses of v
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Date:
05/04/2020
Go Green with SiC

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Figure 1: The stacked SiC FET cascode with an Si-MOSFET die on the source pad of a SiC JFET and its equivalent circuit

Initiatives to go 'carbon' neutral' such as the '2050 long-term strategy' in the EU, to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions, have sharpened engineers' focus on power conversion architectures and their efficiency. Minimising losses has always been a design engineer's goal anyway; low values directly reduce energy and cooling costs while equipment can be sma
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Date:
05/04/2020
Switched Capacitor Converter for Energy Transfer, Conversion

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Figure 1. Switched-capacitor power inverter (top) and voltage doubler (bottom)

As a means of controlling the transfer of energy from a source to power a load, switched capacitor converters can offer a simple, inductor-free alternative to conventional circuits such as buck or boost converters. Eliminating the output inductor can remove
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Date:
05/04/2020
DC Power Supplies for Industrial Control and Automation

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Figure 1. 24 Vdc power supplies are very versatile in that they are compatible with most control system components

Industrial control panels can, and sometimes do, use many different power and control voltages ranging from 480 Vac down to 24 Vac, and 110 Vdc down to 5 Vdc, with occasional designs using voltages outside these ranges. We've previously written about power distribution for control panels gen
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Date:
05/04/2020
Best Practices for Powering USB4

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Figure 1: USB Cable Plug Form Factors

The power landscape is getting simpler with industry convergence on USB Power Delivery (PD) standards, and with good implementations USB4 can continue that trend. Ensuring the best possible charging experience across multiple new use cases will depend on several application design decisions. The main purpose o
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Date:
05/04/2020
Transforming EV Charging with New Winding Techniques

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Figure 1: Core losses for a typical ferrite material – source Ferroxcube 3C90 data

Modern power conversion techniques all push towards higher efficiency for good reason; energy saving is clearly important but there are applications where functionality is also enhanced. Examples would be alternative energy systems such as solar and wind, and electric vehicle chargers where fewer losses equate to shorter recha
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Date:
05/03/2020
5 Home IoT Devices that would Benefit from e-Paper Displays

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E-paper brings several benefits to home IoT systems, enabling them to display information to the user that can be seen in ambient light using minimal power.  What's more, the technology can display in color (yellow and red), enabling the delivery of eye-catching alerts. Here we look at five of the be
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Date:
05/03/2020
Solar Inverter Design

Figure 1: Replacing a SJ with a SiC MOSFET, switching loss decreases significantly

Due to the ever-increasing demand for a clean and renewable source of energy, installing solar systems has accelerated significantly in the last decade. Contemporary solar applications require very highly efficient, power-dense and lightweight grid-tied inverters. Traditionally, IGBT has been the device of
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Date:
05/03/2020
Protect Industrial IoT Equipment with PTC Resettable Fuses

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Figure 1. Typical PTC and ESD USB 3.0/3.1 application

PTC resettable fuses can open electric circuits during fault events like one-time fuses, but are resettable, allowing them to achieve longer use over the product's lifetime. Each PTC fuse consists of a positive temperature coefficient material whose internal resistance increases exponentially with an increase in
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Date:
05/03/2020