International Rectifier Announcement Highlights Day Three at APEC

March 08, 2011 by Jeff Shepard

The Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC) in Fort Worth, Texas, continued to serve as the platform for a host of significant product releases and the unveiling of interesting technological developments, with a new product release from International Rectifier leading the way.

International Rectifier (IR)® introduced the IR3550, the first in a family of integrated PowIRstage® products that delivers higher efficiency and better thermal performance than competing solutions along with smallest footprint while simplifying the dc-dc converter design for next-generation high performance servers, storage and communication systems.

The 60A rated IR3550 simplifies the design and implementation of high current high performance multiphase buck regulators. According to IR, the resulting system solution helps enable fewer phases and lower cost compared to alternative solutions.

The new PowIRstage solution integrates a high-performance synchronous buck gate driver, IR’s latest generation control and synchronous MOSFETs featuring extremely low on-state resistance (RDS(on)) and gate charge, and a Schottky diode into a high density, low profile 6 x 6 x 0.9mm PQFN package. The IR3550 offers superior performance compared to alternative power stage solutions, by achieving up to a 3% improvement in electrical efficiency to help reduce overall power losses and heat generation in the system, thereby reducing dependency on complex thermal management techniques and associated costs as well as improving reliability.

IR’s IR3550 is compatible with most analog and digital controllers available on the market today, providing the designer the flexibility to select the PWM controller of preference. The PowIRstage solution features an integrated current sense amplifier that achieves superior accuracy and signal-to-noise ratios compared to alternate controller-based inductor DCR sensing techniques. Additionally, the device achieves industry best peak and Thermal Design Current (TDC) electrical efficiencies, with up to 95% peak efficiency. The high switching frequency capability of the IR3550 allows for the miniaturization of output inductors and input and output capacitors to help reduce overall solution size.

Alpha and Omega Semiconductor Limited (AOS) introduced two new power MOSFETS that the company says redefine performance standards in a wide array of consumer and industrial applications. AOS is offering two new low-voltage devices optimized for use on the secondary side of high efficiency dc-dc converters. By combining extremely low on-resistance with a very low gate charge, the 40V AON6240 and 60V AOT260L bring high efficiency to a wide range of consumer, telecom, industrial and LED backlighting applications. Both devices feature a soft recovery body diode to lower switching losses and hence lower power consumption for energy-saving green solutions.

AOS also introduced its first high-voltage (600V) product based on a proprietary Alpha-MOS™ technology platform. By taking advantage of major enhancements in process technology, the new device offers designers exciting new opportunities to build higher efficiency power supplies and meet the increasingly stringent green product requirements.

AOS continues to execute its strategy to be a full service power solution provider by introducing its proprietary 600V Alpha-MOS technology platform. The first product on this platform, the AOTF27S60 is well suited for high voltage primary side applications. This new device reduces RdsA by a factor of 3.5 compared to its planar 600V MOSFETs, and improves the switching figure-of-merit Rds*Qg by a factor of 5.7. The RdsQg figure-of-merit is also 4.3 times lower than the super-junction technology recently released by a leading competitor. This state-of-the-art super-junction technology has been implemented on 200mm wafers, and promises to bring significant advantages in terms of process control, precision and cost. The device is available in TO-220, TO-220F, TO-262, TO-262F and D²PAK packages with Green and Pb-Free options.

Micrel Inc. was showcasing what it describes as breakthrough analog technology solutions at APEC as well. Micrel’s SuperSwitcher II™ product line is comprised of three dc-dc buck regulators featuring Micrel’s proprietary Hyper Speed Control™ architecture.

The MIC26400, MIC26600, and MIC26950 devices operate with an input supply voltage range from 4.5 to 26V and deliver an output current of 5, 7 and 12A respectively. The MIC27600 operates over an input supply range of 4.5 to 36V and provides a regulated output of up to 7A of output current. The SuperSwitcher II family has been tailored to be Any Capacitor™ stable independent of output ESR, thus solving the perennial problem of stability power designers have faced with distributed output capacitance. Coupled with a high level of integration in a small form factor, the SuperSwitcher II family delivers uncompromising performance, reduces cycle time, size and costs.