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Distributed power tech for portable multi-core app processors

Posted: 02 May 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:distributed power technology? EMI? power management?

Integrated Device Technology Inc. (IDT) has released what it boasts as the industry's first intelligent, scalable, distributed power management solution for portable multi-core application processors. The company's patented technology claims to offer flexibility to add incremental output current without modifying the controller power management IC (PMIC). This allows the solution to scale with varying SoC power requirements and helps to overcome PCB routing and thermal challenges, added the firm.

The power management solution consists of a main PMIC with communication lines for the connection and control of IDT's compact, external, add-on power sources, for increased power output capability. Unlike traditional solutions that require different PMICs for different applications, IDT's scalable solution cuts development time and risk with a single PMIC that can be re-used and re-optimised to support the evolving power requirements of various processor platforms, detailed the company. In addition, the distributed nature of the add-on power sources offers tremendous advantages for point-of-load regulation, circuit board routing and thermal distribution. The solution is aimed at advanced portable devices such as tablets, clam shell devices, smartphones, ebooks, high-end digital cameras, client solid-state drives (SSD) and set-top boxes.

The IDTP9165 includes five integrated synchronous step-down DC/DC regulators, 11 LDOs, a real time clock (RTC), a 10bit ADC, multiple GPIOs and a high-speed I2C interface. The IDTP9167 add-on power sources are controlled by the IDTP9165 PMIC, allowing the designer to command up to eight external devices as though they were integrated into the main PMIC itself. Each optional device efficiently provides up to 6A of additional peak current, distributing heat across the board and greatly simplifying PCB routing and stack-up requirements near the PMIC. In addition, the transient currents and voltages of the additional phases are contained to the external power sources' immediate areas, helping to minimise EMI and avoid inductive interference.

An innovative control system leverages a proprietary two-wire interface without sensitive analogue feedback traces or individual pulse width modulation (PWM) line connections. This minimises the number of PCB traces and avoids potential signal coupling issues, allowing the customer to easily scale the number of add-on power sources required for each application. Furthermore, automatic signal integrity calibration practically eliminates proximity and trace length concerns, allowing customers to separate the host PMIC and power sources as needed to optimise the system.

The IDTP9165 PMIC and IDTP9167 scalable power sources are currently being sampled to qualified customers only.

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