The new Synchronous Buck-Boost DC/DC converter LTC3111 available from Linear Technology is very significant in many respects. The most important factor being that it is able to operate at 95% efficiency and that too at a very low noise level. It can give a power output of 1.5A when used from a very wide range of power sources. These include multiple or single cell batteries, wall adapter and super-capacitor stacks. This convertor accepts 2.5 to 15V as the input and outputs 5V with the regulated output converted at almost 95% efficiency. Its noise reduction technology ensures that LTC3111 operates at a reduced level on a continuous basis at both buck or boost transitions. This convertor is considered ideal for all applications that require power output at a constant level without noise when the input is varying.
In many areas of operation, where battery life is to be extended by step down solutions, this convertor offers a straightforward solution. This is done by synchronizing the default 800KHz frequency to an external 600 KHz to 1.5 MHz clock. LTC3111 has a proprietary feature of the third generation that gives maximum efficiency at a very low noise level. That reduces the use of external components, which makes the solution offered extremely compact in all respects.
The LTC3111 has four N-channel MOSFETs with very low on-state resistance and the efficiency of 95% is achieved with the use of a single inductor. The Burst Mode is user selectable and this operation impressively lowers the quiescent current down to only 49µA. That enhances the light-load efficiency and significantly improves the battery run time. The burst mode has the option of being disabled whenever the operation is for noise sensitive applications. The output can be disconnected from the load; it has over voltage protection and short circuit protection. A thermal shutdown feature is one of the main advantages of this LTC3111 convertor.
These converters are offered in the market with several variations in packaging. The 14-lead 3mmx4mm DFN package is identified as LTC 3111EDE. Thermally enhanced 16 lead packages are also available and identified as LTC3111MSE. The pricing has been kept competitive. The industrial grade component with an operating junction temperature range of -40 to 125°C is priced slightly on the higher side. Further, higher operating temperature convertors that range from -40 to 150°C are also being offered at special prices. The same converter versions with high reliability are also on offer. Their operating temperature range is from -55 to 150°C. Most significantly, all the versions are available for immediate shipping and discounts are given for bulk quantities.
Notably, the Synchronous Buck-Boost DC/DC converter LTC3111 launched by Linear Technology is significant for both industrial and domestic applications. It is able to achieve an optimum output of 95%, even when the power input is from different sources. The noise level is also considerably reduced as compared to other similar products in the market. This converter is the answer for optimum performance for all noise-sensitive applications. With ready-to-ship availability, this product will find a number of users.