Silicon Labs launched isolated gate drivers for cutting-edge power supply designs by offering exceptional immunity to noise transients caused by high-speed switching. Target applications of the Si827x devices include power supplies for servers, computers and base stations, as well as solar power inverters and microinverters, class D amplifiers, motor controllers, and chargers for electric vehicle/hybrid-electric vehicles (EV/HEV).
Power supply designers often want to maximise power per volume (W/mm3) or power density for which they choose faster switching frequencies. Fast switching improves efficiencies but also produces higher noise transients that can cause signal loss or permanent damage due to latch-up. Power systems use high-power semiconductor switches, such as silicon, gallium nitride (GaN) and silicon carbide (SiC) MOSFETs, which require a high-current isolated driver to control the switch.
This high common mode transient immunity (CMTI) makes the Si827x drivers ideal for fast-switching and noisy power supplies. The devices are said to offer industry-leading noise immunity (200 kV/µs) and latch-up immunity (400 kV/µs), which is twice the immunity rating of other competing devices available.
The devices operate with a wide input range of 2.5 – 5.5V and a maximum drive supply voltage of 30V. The lower input voltage capability of 2.5V enables developers to design systems with a low-voltage power supply that consumes less power, increases system efficiency and is compatible with low-power microcontrollers (MCUs) such as Silicon Labs’ EFM32 Gecko MCUs.
“Silicon Labs’ new Si827x gate driver family solves real-world customer problems, safely enabling fast switching and low-power 2.5V operation with excellent timing specs. The best-in-class noise immunity of our Si827x gate drivers allows developers to safely design power supply systems with fast-switching MOSFETs or faster GaN and SiC switches, which can significantly improve overall system efficiency while enhancing reliability”, said Ross Sabolcik, vice president of power products at Silicon Labs.
Important features include an under-voltage lockout (UVLO) fault protection, de-glitch feature for filtering noisy inputs, very low electromagnetic interference (EMI) emissions, long lifetimes, fast and accurate timing specs, and a wide temperature range of -40 to +125 °C.
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