Distributed-Power Open Standards Alliance Defines Digital Standards

June 23, 2010 by Jeff Shepard

The Distributed-power Open Standards Alliance (DOSA) recently approved specification standards for "Second Generation Single Output Pin DC-DC Converters with Digital Connections" for both the quarter and eighth brick format. These new standards maintain complete backward compatibility with the first-generation quarter and eighth brick standards, covering all types of isolated converters, including fully regulated and unregulated bus converters.

The new standards add an I²C bus with Power Management Bus (PMBus™) protocol functionality along with two user configurable digital I/O pins to the existing standard pin-out. Digital power provides access to critical load information including current and voltage, enabling the system to monitor the power consumption at the highest possible resolution – at the processor or load.

"The DOSA charter for compatible and standardized dc-dc power conversion products now extends to digital power," said Mohan Mankikar, President of Micro-Tech Consultants. "Power design engineers worldwide can now adopt digital power solutions with confidence in multi-vendor sourcing efficiency to reduce risk and accelerate development schedules."

DOSA was founded in 2004, by Lineage Power and SynQor, to develop standards for dc-dc converters to ensure compatibility and facilitate second sourcing for customers. DOSA carries the mission of establishing standards over a broad range of power converter form factors, footprints, feature sets and functionality for both non-isolated point-of-load (POL) and isolated applications.