Other parts of ADI such as automotive are looking at 800V to 5V topologies though to get the higher switching speeds.
“We are switching faster every year and that allows us to reduce the size of the magnetics and puts different requirements on the power stages,” said Chiacchia.”We find we have a huge advantage with SilentSwitcher with very fast edge rates to switch faster without the inherent switching losses so going forward we expect to use this in our micromodules to use silicon FETS for higher frequencies -
“It has a lot to do with the current levels,” said Mann. “5MHz at 5A is possible today but moving an order of magnitude to 50A is achievable.”
“We do have a new product line coming out that are smaller than the original modules at 6.25mm on a side with 20A so there’s a market for that general purpose micromodule power that you can sprinkle around the board.”
Another key area is communication between modules. With distributed power, balancing the requirements is essential. PMBus is seen as a high end feature on power supplies, but there is a move to use it more in individual components to enable lower cost telemetry, margining, supervision, sequencing and fault logging in large power systems.
“We do hear that customers want lower cost implementation of PMbus,” said Chiacchia, who was one of the original directors of the group that put the specification together.
“When PMBus came together, our goal was to try to make firmware reusable in complex power systems that needed complex sequencing and complex margining testing and provide