Technical solutions, industry trends and insights for designing and managing power supplies.
    • Mar 24, 2015

    Maker takes solar energy on-the-go

    Maker takes solar energy on-the-go We’ve all experienced a power outage in our lifetimes. Wouldn’t it be nice if next time, instead of breaking out the candles and flashlights, you could simply flip on your personal solar-powered g...
    • Mar 23, 2015

    How to ensure voltage accuracy and processor safety using the TPS65218

    As industrial and embedded computing applications become more feature-rich and shrink in size, design specifications in processors and field programmable gate arrays ( FPGAs ) are becoming more stringent. In particular, voltage tolerance has become much tighter. The new processors have a voltage tolerance of as little as 5% on power rail to ensure safe...
    • Mar 20, 2015

    GaN is Ready For Digital Power Control

    It’s interesting how the term “ready” has so many different meanings. Having a house full of daughters, “ready” means getting ready to be ready; we won’t leave for another 30 minutes. On an airplane, “ready” means put away your cellphones; eventually, we might take off. We have heard spokespersons from...
    • Mar 19, 2015

    PMBus: Coming of Age at APEC 2015

    I had the privilege of being co-chair of an industry session at APEC 2015. Bob White from Embedded Power Labs started off the session by reminding us that this APEC marks the 10th anniversary of the first release of PMBus. Texas Instruments has been involved with PMBus from its inception, when Dave Freeman (from TI) and Bob White (then with Artesyn...
    • Mar 18, 2015

    APEC discussions range from 3D packaging to GaN development

    Every year the Power Source Manufacturers Association (PSMA) and IEEE’s Power Electronics Society (PELS) work together to organize the Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC), the largest and most influential power electronics conference in...
    • Mar 18, 2015

    A GaN and a GaN and a GaN

    Let’s hope that last night’s APEC 2015 Rap Session will be the last one on this topic1. While it was very well attended, it seems that it was also way too overstated. How many times do we need to be told what gallium nitride (GaN) can do?...
    • Mar 18, 2015

    PMBus – what is the value anyway?

    I will never forget the first time I demo’d the PMBus. About eight years ago, I was visiting with a power-supply design engineer and giving a PMBus buck-controller demo. With a stroke of a PC key, I could change the power supply soft start, switching frequency or output voltage. This left the designer literally with his mouth hanging open, because...
    • Mar 17, 2015

    Lacking grand answers? Look for the best “little” answers

    Much time is spent discussing the need for more efficient use of limited energy resources, and with good reason. Energy demand continues to grow and the number of loads is predicted to climb exponentially as Internet of Things (IoT) deployment becomes real. In 2014, the International Energy Agency (IEA) published an enlightening (and somewhat sobering...
    • Mar 17, 2015

    Don’t "brick" my supply!

    Written by Vaibhav Desai and Ian Bower In today’s connected world software frequent field updates are necessary to improve accuracy, or add on benefits or even fix bugs. If you like these updates to be invisible to you, you are...