Tower Semiconductor Introduces Design Kits in Effort to Reduce Power Consumption of Power Management ICs

3 months ago by Sara McCaslin

Two driving forces in the electronics industry are reduction of power losses and more compact components that support high power and current density without compromising performance.

To that end, Tower Semiconductor recently announced the release of design kits for a new 0.18um high-performance power management technology.

 

Tower Semiconductor and Power Management

This novel 0.18um high-performance power management technology from Tower Semiconductor includes several new features, with the two most prominent being power efficiency improvement of over 35% (over an equivalent die-area) and enables scalable IC operation up to 24V.

It builds on previous generations, leveraging the experience and proven technology to further reduce power consumption in power management ICs. 

 

Tower Semiconductor logo.

The official Tower Semiconductor company logo

 

Specifications and Benefits

This technology that the design kits make accessible includes quite a few improvements over previous generations:

  • 24V operation

  • Scalable power transistors

  • Smaller footprint

  • Low production mask count

  • Significant improvement in efficiency

  • Extremely low Rdson of 6mΩmm² (which is a record low!)

In addition, their 180nm BCD power management platform supports functional integration at high levels and Tower Semiconductor offers hundreds of devices (e.g., resistors, bipolar junction transistors, capacitors, CMOS, and LDMOS). 

 

Impact on Electrical Design

When these features and improvements are combined, they will lead to improved performance, lower costs and better reliability for power management IC designs. For example, the smaller footprint it supports can translate into more compact designs (which is of special interest in areas such as aerospace drones and wearable electronics). 

Also, power consumption is always a major factor in the design of any electrically powered device, but especially when it comes to applications where the design is heavily dependent on battery power, such as laptop computers, mobile devices, and electric vehicles. This new technology supports more efficient, sustainable designs.

In addition to supporting design sustainability and dependability, this new power technology also has benefits for the design cycle itself, including valuable time savings, cost reductions, and fast time to market (which can be invaluable in competitive markets). 

 

Tower Semiconductor headquarters.

Tower Semiconductor headquarters in Migdal Haemek, Israel

 

Backward Compatibility

Tower Semiconductor built this latest 0.18um power management platform on six previous generations of successful technology developed over a ten-year span.

Because the newest release is largely backward compatible with previous generations,  engineers and designers can easily port and update existing designs and parts to take advantage of this newer, more efficient technology. 

 

Applications

These design kits make it possible for engineers to implement the 0.18um high-performance power management technology in a wide variety of applications, including computer, industrial, commercial, mobile,  medical, and automotive designs.

More specifically, the technology can be used in a wide variety of devices that require high efficiency and reliability, including robotic motor drivers, drones, and wearables to laptop processors, PMICs, DC/DC converters, and load switches.

 

Conclusion

Tower Semiconductor’s new 0.18um power management technology has great potential for increasing the efficiency, performance, and design process for power management ICs that can be used in many different industries and applications.

With the release of these design kits, this new technology can be implemented more quickly and effectively.

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