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'Combo' ballast IC enables brighter fluorescent lamps

Posted: 24 Oct 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:STMicroelectronics? STMicro? L6585? electronic ballast IC? half-bridge controllers?

L6585 ballast IC from STMicroelectronics

STMicroelectronics (ST) said its L6585 "combo IC," which integrates a power factor correction stage with a half-bridge controller and all the relevant drivers and logic for an electronic ballast IC, delivers higher efficiency and thus ultimately makes for fluorescent lamps that shine brighter.

As well as a one-chip solution that eliminates a slew of external components that would normally be required by traditional combo ICs, it's also the first such solution, according to the company, to enable end-of-life detection in either "lamp-to-ground" or "block capacitor to ground" ballast configurations.

The L6585 features independently programmable pre-heating and ignition duration as well as the half-bridge frequencies for each operating phase. As a result, this IC serves many different lamp types. In addition, the voltage applied to the lamp is limited to a constant value during the ignition phase.

Other lamp protection features include circuitry for detecting over-voltage and disconnection of the PFC's feedback loop. A highly linear multiplier allows wide-range-mains operation and extremely low total harmonic distortion. Lamp management is simplified by an automatic re-lamp feature, which allows operators to replace lamps without needing to power off any other lamps.

Offered in the SO20 ECOPACK package, the L6585 is priced at $1.40 each in 10,000 quantities. Samples of the combo IC are available today and volume production is scheduled for January.

- Gina Roos

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