Power Electronics

Digital Voltage Regulator Minimizes Space and Energy Usage

Ericsson has introduced an additional member in its Power Modules family of 3E second-generation digital point-of-load (POL) voltage regulators with a new vertical-mount variant of the recently announced 40A-output BMR464 series.

The new regulator can also easily be configured and monitored via the standard PMbus communication protocol and the company's intuitive graphical user interface, making this the first PMBus-compliant 40A point-of-load SIP device available on the market, and offering designers the ability to fully optimize power management in high board-density applications.

The primary end-use applications are network routers, data storage and AdvancedTCA (Advanced Telecommunications Computing Architecture) boards, but the low height of the BMR4642002 also makes it suitable for many other applications when space is at a premium. The device's measurements of 33.00 x 7.6 x 18.1mm make the product suitable for those high-density boards that require a small footprint and height below 20mm, guaranteeing a safe and comfortable fit when assembled in 1-inch rack systems.

In addition to the small footprint of 2.5cm², a corresponding key feature of the 40A- and 132W-output regulator is a market-leading power density of almost 53W/cm². The regulator accepts input voltages from 4.5V to 14V and has an output voltage range of 0.6V to 3.3V with typical efficiency of 97.2% at 5Vin, 3.3Vout and 50% load.

A synchronization feature allows several regulators to be locked to a common switching frequency to eliminate beat frequencies. This reduces EMI filtering complexity and the number of external components needed. Additionally, phase spreading reduces input capacitance requirements, and hence losses, because the peak current drawn from the input supply is spread over the whole switching cycle.
A current-sharing rail can be configured enabling 100% utilization of the output of each device and also, during periods of light loading, one or more phases can be disabled eliminating the associated current drain and switching losses. This process is handled automatically using a PMBus command. Efficiency is further enhanced with adaptive diode emulation that turns off the low-side MOSFET gate drive in the synchronous rectification circuit at low load currents.

The BMR464-SIP also features comprehensive circuit protection. Signaling is provided for remote control, power good, current sharing, voltage tracking, voltage margining and remote sense. Voltage setting is done via pin strapping or the PMBus.

The vertical-mount BMR464-SIP uses two through-hole connectors: one for low-power signals and the second for power. Each power pin (VIN, VOUT and GND) has been doubled, reducing power losses and improving thermal conduction.

The price of the BMR464-SIP (BMR4642002) in OEM quantities is $18.50 each.

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