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Power & Energy

6 Posts authored by: ctammann element14 Team
As most established engineers will tell you, the best lessons learned are honestly from things we’ve screwed up in the past. One of my first mentors told me that and I’d have to agree 100%. Nothing burns itself into your mind quite as well as something that has bitten you on the other end.   With that in mind I wanted to share a recent experience I had with one of my favorite new devices in hopes of saving some of you future frustrations. The IRPS5401 is a multichannel PMIC fro ...
Xilinx FPGAs provide a tremendous amount of design flexibility. Because they are so versatile, defining your power requirements isn’t as straightforward as simply reading an input voltage and load current requirement. You have core rails, auxiliary rails, bank rails and more that provide power to different portions of the chip. Some of these voltages are fixed and some are adjustable to unlock better performance or allow you to set I/O voltage levels compatible with other devices you want ...
Controller vs converter vs module Integration is the driving force behind many of the technologies we see from semiconductor manufacturers. Power devices are no different, whether it be integration of compensation, switching components, multiple outputs or inductors.   For this conversation we are going to define controller as, well, a switching controller. A converter would be a controller with integrated switches (we’ll focus on synchronous converters with both high and low side FE ...
Telemetry in power systems has been around for quite a while, however it usually just showed up in high power environments like server farms. Power system telemetry is the communication between your system processing and the power supply devices. This communication can be used to control and / or monitor details about your power system. PMBus, Power Management Bus is an open standard for digital communication between power devices. The standard was created and is maintained by the System Managem ...
At some point in the product chain, almost all electronics require conversion from an AC source to a DC one. Whether your product ships with an external adapter, battery charger, or if you design your own offline (AC/DC) converter, that originating source power most likely comes from AC mains.   In many cases, it makes the most sense for engineers to buy off the shelf AC/DC converter solutions. There are many good options from manufacturers like Artesyn, Lambda, Bel Power and SL Power. The ...
IC’s typically specify an accuracy range requirement for their power rails. For a very long time 5% was the norm. In a lot of cases that still stands true, but with higher performance, higher accuracy or higher power devices this requirement has pushed down to 3% or lower. In addition, limitations may be set on peak to peak noise, transient response requirements and more. So how do you design your system to meet these requirements?   Sources of Error A good first step is understanding ...