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LED driver IC touts voltage, current protection

Posted: 30 Mar 2009 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:driver IC? LED? voltage protection current?

Infineon Technologies AG has introduced a low-cost LED driver IC for general lighting applications that offers thermal protection for LEDs and high output current accuracy.

Specifically designed for driving high-power LEDs, the BCR 450in combination with an external transistorfeatures precise current control, thermal protection, and over-voltage and over-current protection functions. As BCR 450 produces no electromagnetic radiation, it is well-suited for applications sensitive against EMI, such as lighting in transportation vehicles including buses, ships, trains and aircrafts, as well as medical applications with communication bus systems. In addition to general lighting systems, BCR 450 is also ideal for applications in architectural and accent lighting, advertising, strobe lights for emergency vehicles, hazard lights and road safety lights.

The BCR 450 was specifically designed for use with high-wattage LEDs (for example, in the 0.5W, 1W or 3W range) in combination with an external transistor. By simply changing the external transistor, manufacturers of LED lighting have the flexibility to adapt output currents from 100mA to above 1A.

The application circuit with BCR 450 has low component count and is free of inductors, capacitors and free-wheeling diode resulting in a small PCB space requirement. This includes the elimination of electrolytic capacitors, which limit the lifetime of switch-mode driver solutions. Since there is no need for capacitors with BCR 450, the lifetime of the LED system can be extended. Regarding long life operation of LED lighting sources, Infineon implemented a thermal shut down feature, and over-voltage and over-current protection into the device.

In large parts of the illumination market and especially in architectural lighting, a homogenous light output in the whole LED chain of light sources is crucial. The human eye is sensitive toward shifts in light color. The BCR 450 with its output current precision varying only 10 percent over the entire operating temperature range supports the homogenous light output requirement for LED lighting fixtures.

Volume production of the new BCR 450 LED driver IC has already started. The device is available in a small 6-pin SC74 package. In quantities of 50,000 units, pricing for the BCR 450 ranges between approximately Euro 0.25 and Euro 0.30 per unit.

- Paul Buckley
Power Management DesignLine Europe

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