Power Electronics


Single 48V to 1V, 200A Converter Powers Microprocessors (Part 1)

Microprocessors (µPs) and system-on-chip (SoC) integrated circuits impose very demanding large and fast load current changes of 10 A/µs to 50 A/µs yet require ultra-small transient voltage overshoot to settle very quickly. This is currently handled by up to 12 synchronous buck converters operating in parallel at 5MHz from 12V input, resulting in poor efficiency, […]

Read more >>> Single 48V to 1V, 200A Converter Powers Microprocessors (Part 1)

In the quest for abundant, renewable alternatives to fossil fuels, scientists have sought to harvest the sun’s energy through “water splitting,” an artificial photosynthesis technique that uses sunlight to generate hydrogen fuel from water. But water-splitting devices have yet to live up to their potential because there still isn’t a design for materials with the […]

Read more >>> A Solar Cell that Does Double Duty for Renewable Energy

“We’re working hard to improve safety in night driving situations,” remarks Mathias Thamm, head of Volkswagen’s Technologies and Innovations sub-department. He says that it’s important because about 30% of all accidents involving personal injury occur at night, and accident severity is much higher than during the day. Moreover, as the number of daylight hours shrink […]

Read more >>> The Future Looks Bright for Innovations in Automotive Lighting

The LT8708-1 developed by Analog Devices is a 98% efficient bidirectional regulator controller IC that operates as a slave to a master LT8708 IC. One or more slaves can be connected to a single master, proportionally increasing power and current capability of the system. The LT8708-1 slave can deliver as much cur­rent or power as the […]

Read more >>> 80-V Multiphase Slave Controller Simplifies Battery-Backup Power Conversion

The Power by Linear LTC3310S developed by Analog Devices is a synchronous buck dc-dc converter capable of providing up to 10-A output from a 2.25- to 5.5-V input (Fig. 1). Its fixed-frequency peak current-mode architecture is ideal for high step-down ratio applications that demand fast transient response. It comes in a thermally enhanced, 18-lead, 3- × […]

Read more >>> Compact 5-V, 10-A Synchronous Buck Regulator Cuts Heat, EMI

Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed a medium-voltage fast charger (MVFC) prototype for electric vehicles that: Is at least 10X smaller than existing systems, while charging at the same speed. Wastes 60% less power during the charging process. Employs silicon-carbide (SiC) power semiconductors. The table compares the characteristics of today’s […]

Read more >>> SiC Power Devices Lead to More Efficient, Smaller EV Battery Charger

Lithium-iron-phosphate (also known as lithium ferrous phosphate, LiFeP04, or LFP) batteries are used in certain high C-rate applications. Given their peculiarities, special care needs to be taken while fuel-gauging them. This article covers why these battery types are ideal for certain applications, the special considerations that should be taken into account while fuel-gauging these batteries, […]

Read more >>> Why Special Care is Needed When Fuel-Gauging LiFeP04 Batteries

The power requirements of military equipment differ from those of many other devices. Military personnel don’t have the luxury of having field-service representatives on every deployment. Having intuitive, compact, and reliable devices can therefore be critical to the success of a military operation. To guide design engineers when choosing a battery for their military device, […]

Read more >>> Drivers of Military Battery Design

Sometimes one good chapter is all that’s necessary to make a book worthwhile for a design engineer. The chapter Low-Power Wearable and Wireless Sensors for Advanced Healthcare and Monitoring might be one of those cases, although other chapters in the book entitled IoT and Low-Power Wireless Circuits, Architectures, and Techniques, edited by Christopher Siu, provide […]

Read more >>> Book Review: IoT and Low-Power Wireless Circuits, Architectures, and Techniques

An electrified drag racer was introduced by General Motors at the recent SEMA show in Las Vegas. Developed by General Motors and built in partnership with the pioneering electric drag-racing team Hancock and Lane Racing, the concept race car—based on the 2019 COPO Camaro—is entirely electric-powered, driven by an electric motor providing the equivalent of more […]

Read more >>> Electric Dragster, Solar Roof Car Highlight Las Vegas Show

From a misguided missile guidance system to a phantom bug in an emulator tool, engineers share how they worked good magic to troubleshoot and fix a problem.

Read more >>> Treat Yourself with a Compilation of Real-World Troubleshooting Tales this Halloween

If you associate “power module” with “larger component,” think again. As industrial and consumer products get smaller, their power modules are following the same trajectory. The latest series of four microsystem-scaled, step-down dc-dc power modules introduced by Maxim Integrated increases the input voltage from the 42-V maximum rating of the previous maximum up to 60 V. […]

Read more >>> Tiny Higher-Voltage Power Modules Nearly Disappear from Sight

Lord Kelvin knew how to measure low resistance from Ohm’s Law, using voltage drop with a defined current. He had to take his voltage measurement exactly at the resistor with connections separate from those carrying the current. This method became known as a “Kelvin connection,” which can be used to improve performance of wide-bandgap switches, […]

Read more >>> Kelvin Connections to WBG Devices Boost TO-247 Switching Speed

A lack of planarity along the interface between the solder and the ceramic raft in an IGBT module is a common anomaly that can make heat dissipation uneven across the die and cause the die to crack. Deviations from planarity in both the raft and the solder are typically slight, with variations typically measured in […]

Read more >>> Detect IGBT Module Defects in Acoustic 3D

Batteries present a major difficulty from an R&D perspective. Because they’re mostly “black boxes,” it’s very difficult to observe what’s going on inside of them while they’re functioning, and a destructive autopsy is far different and less insightful than live exploration. However, a team based at Columbia University has contributed a major solution to this […]

Read more >>> Stimulated Raman Microscopy Provides Battery Ion-Transport Insight

InnoEnergy, the European innovation engine for sustainable energy, launched its global call for electric-storage startups. Fifteen of the most innovative, sustainable energy startups will receive a tailored package of added-value services and a €100,000 cash prize will be awarded to the best one. Europe isn’t alone in the search for the best energy-storage solutions—the U.S. […]

Read more >>> Europe’s Best Energy-Storage Solution to Receive €100,000 Cash Prize

Under Secretary for Science Paul Dabbar announced the new Duration Addition to electricitY Storage (DAYS) program and its awardees at last month’s Innovation XLab Energy Storage Summit at SLAC National Laboratory. “The Department of Energy is committed to researching innovative energy technologies and discovering opportunities to make America’s energy infrastructure more competitive and more secure,” said […]

Read more >>> DoE Reveals New Projects to Extend Grid Energy Storage

For decades, robots in controlled environments like assembly lines have been able to pick up the same object over and over again. More recently, breakthroughs in computer vision have enabled robots to make basic distinctions between objects. Even then, though, the systems don’t truly understand objects’ shapes, so there’s little the robots can do after […]

Read more >>> Advanced Computer Vision Lets Robot Pick Up Virtually Any Object

It’s been said that we’re in the midst of a fourth industrial revolution, driven by disruptive technological change. This revolution will impact how we communicate, interact and travel. In particular, the autonomous vehicle might produce the most disruptive change in our lifetime—at least Volvo thinks so. 1. The Volvo 360c is fully autonomous, fully electric […]

Read more >>> Volvo Envisions Autonomous Vehicles as Revolutionizing Travel

Why More-Than-Moore Power Management Is Required to Keep Up With Exponential Growth in ICT Data Consumption  Significant gains in energy efficiency are required to keep up with the exponential growth in the data consumption of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) systems: end-user devices, networks, and data centers. Moore’s Law scaling (monolithic integration in silicon) is […]

Read more >>> Chapter 25: Data-Center Power Management

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