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inductor sizing for DC stepdown switcher

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Ken Muldrew, Jun 23, 2005.

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  1. Ken Muldrew

    Ken Muldrew Guest

    I want to charge a bank of four 12V, 100Ah lead-acid batteries using a
    56V, 5A transformer (so about 78V DC). My plan is to reproduce the
    charging stages provided by the UC3906 (but scaled up for 48V) by
    using PWM to control the voltage seen by the batteries. The logic is
    easy enough to implement in a microcontroller but I'm stuck trying to
    figure out what size to make the inductor (basically, the PWM controls
    a FET that turns the supply on and off with an inductor in series and
    a diode between the FET and the inductor allowing conduction from
    ground). Art of Electronics (2nd ed.) gives a single example but I'm
    afraid it's been a long while since I've done anything with inductors.
    Can anyone give me any hints?

    Ken Muldrew

    (remove all letters after y in the alphabet)
  2. It is all based on the definition of inductance:
    V=L*(di/dt) or the applied voltage equals the inductance in henries
    times the rate of change of current in amperes per second.

    If you have chosen your cycle time, then you have to decide what
    current ripple you are satisfied with during the cycle. You already
    know the voltages involved.

    Take a look at this basic switching regulator tutorial:
  3. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Hello Ken,

    To add to John's explanation: You also need to figure out what the
    highest expected peak current in the inductor will be and size it
    accordingly. Else you'd be treated to an impressive pyrotechnic scenario.

    In a prototype you can watch the inductor current on a scope. If you see
    a marked rise in slope steepness (like a shark fin) near the current
    peaks that would indicate that the inductor's core might be too close to

    Often you only see typical saturation data published such as "inductance
    drops to 75% at x amps". Then you have to contact the mfg to find out
    what the worst case would be.

    Regards, Joerg
  4. On Thu, 23 Jun 2005 15:47:05 GMT, in
    try this penguin site, It's a calculator page

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