Back to Basics

Back to Basics: Do I Need Filtering on the Input and Output Side of the Converters?

March 30, 2014
By
Back to Basics: Do I Need Filtering on the Input and Output Side of the Converters?

All switching power supplies generate potentially interfering signals as a result of their high frequency, high power switching.

Read more »

Back to Basics: How do I Ensure Correct Power Rail Sequencing in a Multi-Rail Power Architecture?

January 6, 2014
By
Back to Basics: How do I Ensure Correct Power Rail Sequencing in a Multi-Rail Power Architecture?

For a graphic illustration of why power sequencing is essential, consider what could happen in a large industrial system if its motors and actuators became energized before its control electronics. Clearly, the potential for such unpredictable and dangerous scenarios must be eliminated with carefully-designed power start-up sequences. And shutdown sequences are equally as important. Incorrect power sequencing can cause problems at the semiconductor as well as at the system level: these conditions could lead to unexpected reverse bias across a CMOS device. This can damage or destroy the device, or latch it into an...

Read more »

Back to Basics: Why do we need active surge suppression?

December 7, 2013
By
Back to Basics: Why do we need active surge suppression?

It’s well understood that unexpected electrical disturbances can cause data loss or even permanent damage to any unprotected electronic equipment in their path. Active as well as passive suppression is essential to provide comprehensive protection from all such events. This post shows why this is so, and how active suppression works to fulfil its role. Electrical events threaten electronic equipment by placing excessive electrical energy onto its input power rails in the form of a transient, a surge, or possibly both. A transient is typified as a fast-rising voltage spike of high magnitude –...

Read more »

Back to Basics: The Importance of Switching Frequency

September 30, 2013
By
Back to Basics: The Importance of Switching Frequency

The importance of switching frequency quickly becomes apparent to systems designers bringing regulated power to on-board semiconductor devices. With the continual demand for higher performance, CPUs, DSPs and other such devices grow more power-hungry. Accordingly, higher power density regulators with minimal PCB footprints have evolved; these use the latest in IC integration, MOSFETs and packaging. However, even these struggle keep pace with the continuing stream of newer, more powerful devices. With these pressures, it is tempting to increase regulator frequency, as this reduces the size and board footprint requirements of the associated passive devices...

Read more »

Back to Basics: What is Active ORing?

September 4, 2013
By
Back to Basics: What is Active ORing?

The uninterrupted availability of server, communications and telecoms equipment is frequently critical to its client applications, so this equipment typically uses two or more power sources in a redundant power architecture. These sources need mutual protection, otherwise a short-circuit fault in one could quickly overload and damage the others.

Read more »

Back to Basics: Paralleling Power Components for Current Sharing

July 4, 2013
By
Back to Basics: Paralleling Power Components for Current Sharing

There can be many reasons for paralleling power components such as DC-DC converters for power delivery. One common situation is when the load current exceeds a single module’s rating. Another arises when a degree of power redundancy or fault tolerance is required. Paralleling of modules can provide an effective solution in either case, provided they share the load equally. However, most power components will not do this inherently. In power converter arrays, one or more of the devices will try to assume a disproportionate or excessive fraction of the load. Typically, the converter with...

Read more »

Back to Basics: What are Y-Capacitors?

June 5, 2013
By

What’s the background? When electronic equipment is connected to the AC mains, it has the potential to generate common-mode electrical noise. If this is allowed to flow back on to the mains supply line, it can disturb other equipment also connected to the same line.

Read more »

Find out more about our Cool-Power Buck Regulators DCMs - A better Brick subscribe to vicor newsletter Contact Us

Get Connected