Digitalizing Power Supplies

An on-board power supply can benefit from a digital control. The benefits are increased efficiency, advanced control over power supply and eventually, reduction in total cost.

Power management is facing a continuous onslaught of demands in the form of increased integration, more flexibility and more features. But it has also motivated the exploration and invention of new ways of power management. Digital power supply is one of the fruits of this quest.

Consequently, digitalized custom power supply has garnered significant attention from industry. Integrated power management ICs already employ digital gates. Using digital circuits allows you to integrate some cool features which are too sophisticated to put on an analog control. Digital custom power supply is just a natural progression from there.

Analog power supply designers must explore this new frontier if they want to remain current. It makes sense, because an increasing number of customers are asking for digital power supplies. Of course, digital custom power supplies also have limitations.

For instance, if you want sensing and reacting to occur simultaneously like peak current limiting, an analog circuit is the better choice. But if you look at the bigger picture, you will see that a digital control is still more advantageous than an analog control.