Technical solutions, industry trends and insights for designing and managing power supplies.
    • Mar 31, 2015

    PowerTips: How to limit inrush current in an AC-DC power supply

    When powering up an AC/DC power supply, a huge amount of energy transfers from the power source to the bulk capacitor. In this installment of Power Tips we examine how to limit inrush current in an AC/DC power supply. Figure 1: Inrush current of a power supply at 120VAC/60Hz input As a result of powering up an AC/DC power supply, you can observe...
    • Mar 30, 2015

    Which power supply sequencing solution is right for you?

    I was at a birthday party a few weeks ago and a guest I never met before asked me about my latest project at work. Immediately, I replied that I was working on a sequencing problem. The funny part is he automatically thought that I was i...
    • Mar 29, 2015

    Maximum power output of Fly-Buck converters

    The Fly-Buck converter (shown in Figure 1) is a simple method of generating low-power isolated bias rails because it does not require any compensation loop based on opto-couplers or extra windings to regulate the isolated output. The Fly-Buck is a primary-side-regulated (PSR) converter. The primary (nonisolated) output is directly regulated using closed...
    • Mar 27, 2015

    APEC 2015: A wrap-up and a look toward next year

    Another Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC) has drawn to a close. I hope all of the attendees had an uneventful trip home. Over the years, APEC has changed for me. My first APEC was in 1999 (although I know plenty of you have attended for much longer than that); it was kind of like “speed dating.” You meet a lot of people in a very...
    • 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&r...
    • 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...