Consortium focuses on future of digital power solutions

Consortium focuses on future of digital power solutions

Business news |
By eeNews Europe

AMP’s founding members are US-based CUI, Swedish-based Ericsson Power Modules and Japan-based Murata who are all global manufacturers developing advanced power conversion technology for distributed power architectures with the objective of creating a complete ecosystem of hardware, software and support.

The advent of digital control in DC-DC converters and point-of-load regulators, driven initially by telecom and datacom companies experiencing a staggering rise in IP traffic and now proliferating into other industries, has made multi-sourcing of leading-edge power conversion products more difficult for customers.  A level of software compatibility will be required in order to achieve a true multi-source solution, including compatibility of PMBus commands, proprietary controller commands, and configuration files. The AMP Group was formed to address this challenge.

The AMP Group is looking to extend its influence well beyond simply defining mechanical dimensions and product footprints for intelligent DC-DC power modules and AC-DC power supplies. The consortium’s long-term strategic alliance is to foster close collaboration between members to develop shared technology roadmaps.

The participating companies will establish common mechanical and electrical specifications for their products, standardization of monitoring, control and communications functions, and create common configuration files for plug-and-play interoperability between products from each firm. The consortium’s aim is to develop a multi-sourced, high efficiency power ecosystem with supply chain reliability through continuity of production.

The AMP Group is aiming to offer a higher level of collaborative effort for the development of advanced power solutions for the distributed power architecture.  The collaboration will embrace hardware, software and support compatibility among the participants to create a true multi-source business environment.
AMP also plans to collaborate on a shared long-term strategic technology roadmap starting initially with digital Point of Load (POL) products and advanced bus DC-DC converter solutions.

Explaining the background behind the consortium’s creation Mark Adams, CUI Inc’s Senior Vice President said: "We are really formalising a relationship that CUI, Ericsson Power Modules and Murata Power Solutions have all had for several years now.  We have all been working in the digital Point of Load (POL) space and advanced bus DC-DC converter arena for some time now.  We see the digital power market is growing rapidly and is no longer a leading edge technology but is now becoming a mainstream technology.  As we have all been out there selling to customers we know that the first question we hear is: ‘Do you have a second source?’ That is why the three companies have had second sourcing agreements with one another for the past couple of years. The reason we have created this consortium is because we all recognise it is not easy to provide this second source".  

"When you look historically at standards groups and digital power they have traditionally been focused on simply mechanical standards. They haven’t focused on anything else but we believe AMP will have to because we are not focusing simply on an analog power supply but rather a digital power supply which means you have other considerations to take into account.  We will be footprint compatible but we will also be feature compatible and that is critical because as you consider digital intelligence and digital control there are a lot of features that can be incorporated into these modules.  So if Murata is offering some type of fault management or voltage tracking capability CUI will also have to match that and so will Ericsson in order for it to be a true multi-source device".

The AMP Group plans to announce the consortium’s first set of standards, for digital Point-of-Load regulators and advanced bus DC-DC converters, at the Electronica show in Munich, November 11-14th, 2014.

Related articles and links:

News articles:

Trends in power supply packaging – advances in component integration

Robust power modules support ultra-wide input voltage ranges

CUI signs licenses with Ericsson for advanced bus converters

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