I was recently hanging out with a college friend of mine that is a hardware designer for a satellite imaging start-up in the Bay Area, a.k.a. the "Center of the Universe" for new technologies like that of his company. There are only twelve employees at this start-up, so after you account for human resources, accounting, marketing, sales, and leadership, that doesn't leave much headcount for power supply design engineers. Not to mention, my friend was definitely on the digital design track in college, and was more oriented towards the design of the FPGA more so than the power supply anyway. I didn’t want to ruin the vibe of the barbecue by breaking out my laptop and going through a PowerPoint, but I did take a minute to convey the benefits of the new family of SIMPLE SWITCHER converters that I was in the process of releasing. You can watch an overview video I did on the topic here.
My friend is the perfect example of a SIMPLE SWITCHER user - a design engineer that just wants a high-performance power supply that is as easy as possible to put into his design so he can move on to designing other parts of his system. And the new family of SIMPLE SWITCHER converters makes wide VIN design easier than ever.
First of all, the new LM4360x and LM4600x family is synchronous, so there is no need to add an external diode that takes up valuable board space. And because that diode is essentially replaced with an integrated MOSFET, and diodes are more lossy than MOSFETs, the synchronous devices are more efficient anyway. That’s a win-win. In addition to the elimination of the diode, this new family also features integrated compensation. Watch a video "Loop Compensation Made SIMPLE". Altogether, that’s three or four components that my friend can completely forget about when doing his design.
Having integrated synchronous MOSFETs also helps to improve the EMI performance. One of the bigger contributors to EMI in a power supply is the inductance created by the size of the di/dt loop formed by the two FETs and the Cin capacitor. This loop can be minimized with the new synchronous SIMPLE SWITCHER converters because the pin configuration allows placement of Cin right next to the Vin and PGND pins. Very simple, and very good EMI performance as a result.
My friend’s company is pretty small and only has a couple of designs going on at one time. But we have met with larger industrial companies that are doing tons of designs with all kinds of input voltages and output currents. For those guys, this family is simply amazing. All seven devices in the family come in the same package, so they are all pin- and footprint-compatible. These designers can copy and paste the same design over and over regardless of whether they are doing 12Vin, 24Vin, 36Vin or 500mA, 2A, 3A designs. That’s a quick way to save time and headaches.
What’s even better than all of these snazzy device features are the WEBENCH design tools that TI offers. These parts are of course all fully enabled in WEBENCH Power Designer because they are SIMPLE SWITCHER products. But recent innovations made to the WEBENCH online design environment now enables the designer to edit design schematics, and export schematics and layouts into popular CAD tools.
You might be able to find more expensive parts out there with slightly higher efficiency or marginally smaller packages, but you simply won’t find anything that is easier to use than a SIMPLE SWITCHER product. Get a free sample and start your design now.