Technical solutions, industry trends and insights for designing and managing power supplies.
    • Aug 13, 2018

    Dimming in switched-mode LED drivers

    One of the key concerns in light-emitting diode (LED) driver designs is the dimming performance. Most designers use one of two methods: analog dimming or digital pulse-width modulation (PWM) dimming. There are two ways to implement digital PWM dimming: an enabling on/off approach or a shunt-field effect transistor (FET) approach. In both implementations...
    • Aug 8, 2018

    When it comes to power process technologies, one size does not fit all

    Power electronic system and circuit designers have more choices in power process technologies. Silicon-based devices continue to evolve, but there is also an increasing option to use wide-bandgap material technologies such as gallium nitride (GaN) ...
    • Aug 1, 2018

    LDO basics: capacitor vs. capacitance

    Low-dropout regulators (LDOs) provide power in all types of applications. But for an LDO to operate normally, you need an output capacitor. A common issue when designing LDOs into an application is selecting the correct output capacitor. In this post, I will explore different considerations when selecting an output capacitor and how it may affect your...
    • Jul 25, 2018

    LDO Basics: Preventing reverse current

    In most low-dropout regulators (LDOs), current flow is like one-way street – go in the wrong direction and major problems can occur! Reverse current is current that flows from VOUT to VIN instead of from VIN to VOUT. This current usually traver...
    • Jul 16, 2018

    Key considerations for designing with the new PoE standard

    The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.3bt standard will publish in September 2018 and enable Power over Ethernet (PoE) applications up to 90W/71.3W (sent/received) such as LED connected lighting ballasts and digital signage. With the new standard fast approaching, many electronic system designers need to quickly familiarize...
    • Jul 5, 2018

    A review of EMI standards, part 2 – radiated emissions

    Radiated electromagnetic interference (EMI) from switching power supplies is dynamic and situational problem that relates to circuit board layout, component placement and parasitic effects within the power supply itself, as well as the overall system...
    • Jun 28, 2018

    A review of EMI standards, part 1 – conducted emissions

    In general, electrical products must meet some type of electromagnetic interference (EMI) performance metric, whether established in the product’s design specifications or to comply with regulatory requirements. It’s important to take int...
    • Jun 26, 2018

    The sound of GaN

    High-fidelity (hi-fi) audio is becoming more and more popular among music fans and movie buffs, from portable speakers to high-end, in-home audio to automotive systems. And from the A to Z of classifications for audio power amplifiers, Class-D amplif...
    • Jun 23, 2018

    FPGA power design challenges: Can I use a PMIC for that?

    System designers gain three benefits when designing systems with a field-programmable gate array (FPGA): reprogrammability, performance scalability and fast time to market. But there are also challenges that designers must overcome. In this post, I w...
    • Jun 20, 2018

    LDO Basics: Quiescent Current 101

    How aggravating is it to pick up an electronic device that you’ve barely used, only to find that the battery is nearly or completely dead? If your device was just on standby or asleep, this may have happened because of a small but crucial speci...