Bulk Metal Foil Current Sensing Resistors

Bulk Metal Foil Current Sensing Resistors

Vishay Precision Group, Inc. announced that it has completed tests showing that its Bulk Metal® Foil current sensing resistors meet the accuracy and stability required by its aircraft customers for charging of Li-ion batteries in avionics applications. VFR resistors provide a variety of device configurations and ultra-high-precision specifications to help ensure the efficient and safe charging of Li-ion batteries. They include the surface-mount Z-Foil VCS1610Z and VCS1625ZP and the high-power VCS331Z and CSNG (offering 3- or 6-chip constructions).

The Li-ion battery charging process goes through several critical phases to ensure the battery is charged to its maximum capacity, while at the same time following certain safety rules to avoid explosion or fire. Li-ion battery chargers require accurate current and voltage settings and monitoring, as well as a constant current and constant voltage. If these accuracy requirements are not met, the charger will undercharge or overcharge the battery. A failure to completely charge the battery results in reduced battery life, while overcharging can cause batteries to fail due to overheating.

Precision current sensing resistors are required to charge and monitor the Li-ion battery at a known current level until it reaches its final voltage. At this point, the charger circuitry switches over to constant voltage mode, providing the current necessary to hold the battery at this final voltage. For both phases, Bulk Metal Foil resistors provide higher accuracy than other technologies, such as thin film, thick film, and wirewound resistors.

There are five important phases that need to be considered when choosing a current sense or shunt resistor for any application: connection errors, external and Internal temperature errors, frequency, drift over time, load life stability and thermal EMF. VFR's Bulk Metal Foil current sense resistors offer a four-terminal Kelvin connection for increased accuracy. They feature an ultra-low TCR of ±0.05 ppm/°C typical (0°C to +60°C) and ±0.2 ppm/°C typical (-55°C to +125°C, +25°C ref.). The surface-mount VCS1610Z and VCS1625ZP offer load-life stability of ±0.015% at 70°C for 2,000 hours at rated power while the VCS331Z power resistor features load-life stability down to ±0.005% (50 ppm) typical at 3 W and +25°C for 2,000 hours (mounted on a heatsink) and thermal EMF of 0.05 µV/°C typical.

Featuring a non-inductive (<0.08 µH), non-capacitive design, Bulk Metal Foil resistors offer a rise time of 1.0 ns with effectively no ringing, a thermal stabilization time of < 1 s to within 10 ppm of steady state value, current noise of 0.010 µVrms per volt of applied voltage (<-40 dB), voltage coefficient of <0.1 ppm/V, and resistance tolerance down to ±0.01%.

Samples and production quantities of the Z-Foil resistors are available now, with lead times of five days for prototype samples and from two days to five weeks for standard orders at the catalog houses, depending on their shelf availability.

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