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GaN chips add autonomous sensing and protection

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By Nick Flaherty


GaNSense integrates critical, real-time, autonomous sensing and protection circuits that further improves reliability and robustness, while increasing the energy savings and fast-charging benefits of its GaN IC technology. GaNSense technology offers real-time, accurate and fast sensing of system parameters including current and temperature, enabling loss-less current-sensing that improves energy savings by up to an additional 10 percent compared to prior generations, as well as reduced external component count and smaller system footprints.

In addition, if the GaN IC identifies a potentially dangerous system condition, the IC is designed to transition rapidly to a cycle-by-cycle sleep-state, protecting both the device and the surrounding system. GaNSense also integrates an autonomous standby-power feature that automatically reduces standby power consumption when the GaN IC is in idle mode, helping to further reduce power consumptions.

GaNSense technology, says the company, means reducing dangerous over-current spikes by half and reducing time in the ‘danger zone’ by half compared to previous best-in-class solutions. GaNFast monolithic integration delivers dependable, glitch-free operation with no ‘ringing’, for improved system reliability.

“From detection to protection in only 30 ns, GaNSense technology is 600% faster than discrete GaN implementations,” says Dan Kinzer, COO/CTO and co-founder of Navitas. “This next generation from Navitas provides a highly-accurate and effective defense against potential system failure modes. Couple that with immunity to transient voltages up to 800V and tight gate waveform control and voltage regulation, only possible with our proprietary process design kit, and you have a new standard in reliability, robustness and performance for power semiconductors.”

The new family of GaN power ICs with GaNSense technology spans 10 products – all of which offer the core, critical GaNFast integration of GaN power, GaN drive, control and protection. All are rated at 650V/800V with 2kV ESD protection, and RDS(ON) ranging from 120 to 450 mOhms in 5×6 and 6×8 mm PQFN packaging.

The family of 3rd-generation GaN ICs is optimized for modern power conversion topologies including high-frequency quasi-resonant (HFQR) flyback, active-clamp flyback (ACF) and PFC boost, which are popular to deliver the fastest, most efficient and smallest chargers and adapters within the mobile and consumer markets. GaNFast power ICs with GaNSense technology are in mass production with immediate availability.

Navitas Semiconductor

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