Power Integrations bundles BridgeSwitch with software design tool
Power Integrations’ BridgeSwitch ICs are now offered with software to optimise efficiency and reduce board space at the design stage. For three-phase motor inverters, the BridgeSwitch half bridge motor driver ICs are offered with the updated Motor-Expert Suite software. According to Power Integrations this combination achieves 98.2 per cent efficiency, as well as significant reduction in board space and time to market. The hardware-software is suitable for residential and commercial appliances including air conditioners, high speed hair dryers, refrigerator compressors, range hoods and water pumps.
The integrated BridgeSwitch ICs provide lossless current feedback for the positive half cycle. The three-phase field oriented control (FOC) software runs on any Arm Cortex-M0 or equivalent microcontroller and reconstructs the negative half-cycle current information from data present in the other phase current signals. This eliminates the need for external current sense resistors and operational amplifiers. As a result, the number of components needed for current feedback circuitry is cut from 30 to just three and 70 per cent of associated board space is saved, said Power Integrations.
Motor-Expert Suite includes both single- and three-phase code libraries, as well as the latest version of the Motor-Expert GUI, the motor control configuration and diagnostics tool for the BridgeSwitch IC family. This tool reduces the cost and complexity of brushless DC (BLDC) drive design, claimed Power Integration but enabling users to visualise system operation, as it displays the status of data and provides insight into inverter and motor operation.
A new design example, DER-964, uses three BridgeSwitch ICs and provides up to 300W output power without requiring a heatsink. The 97 per cent efficient three-phase inverter design occupies a 65 x 50mm PCB and removes the shunts and op-amps seen in conventional feedback measurement.