Power Components

New Chip Brings ‘Zero Power’ to DC-DC Applications

Fabless power semiconductor company Helix Semiconductors today announced sampling of the HS200, a dc-dc power IC that converts 48V to extremely low voltage. The new IC offers greater than 97 percent efficiency at 2.6W and greater than 90 percent efficiency at 15W — making it the most energy-efficient-per-density solution available.

Leaders in the power supply industry have recognized the global importance of reducing wasted power and have adopted a goal of ‘Zero Power’ — with power efficiency of less than or equal to 5mW when devices are in standby mode. Zero Power has quickly become the gold standard for efficient power supplies, yet few can meet it.

The no load power of the HS200 consumes only 0.5mW, which far and away exceeds Zero Power. Based on Helix Semiconductors’ patented MuxCapacitor™ voltage reduction technology, the HS200 features a unique three-stage process, each of which divides its input in half.

The eMpower HS200 from Helix is a DC-DC power IC that converts 48V to extremely low voltage. It features a unique three-stage process, each of which divides its input in half. Power can be pulled from any of its three outputs simultaneously up to 15W. (click on image to enlarge)

Power can be pulled from any of its three outputs simultaneously up to 15W. MuxCapacitor enables the HS200 to achieve unprecedented high efficiency and to stay nearly flat from full load down to 5 percent load.

According to Harold A. Blomquist, president and CEO of Helix Semiconductors, “The launch of the HS200 DC-DC device represents a significant milestone in the history of Helix Semiconductors. Today, we serve everything from mobile computing, mobile communications and consumer electronics to IoT, industrial IoT and electronic vehicles.

“This equates to a total available market of 3 billion devices worldwide. Our goal is to continue to push the envelope to bring true Zero Power to any device that uses a power supply,” concluded Blomquist.

Buck regulator application schematic (click on image to enlarge)

Target applications for the HS200 include Power over Ethernet products such as wireless access points, security cameras, IoT gateways, and VoIP phones — as well as 48V input telecom and data center blades and electric and hybrid vehicles.

The HS200 also targets products with 24V inputs, such as HVAC systems and industrial controllers. In fact, the device is very flexible and can perform voltage conversions on input voltage ranging from 12V to 48V with output voltage as low as 1.5V.

Key features:

  • +24/48Vdc input voltage; multi-stage MuxCapacitor
  • 15W output: Pout1 + Pout2 + Pout3
  • Multiple intermediate outputs
  • Low voltage current limitation
  • Idle operation: active, no load
  • 5mW power consumption
  • Active on output
    • 97% Efficiency @ 2.6W
    • 90% Efficiency @ 15W

Next up from Helix will be the HS110, the company’s ac-dc 0.18 micron chipset, which targets 65W for laptops, tablets and smartphone adapters.

In addition, Helix Semiconductors is flexing its thought leadership muscle by collaborating with testing companies such as Underwriters Laboratories. This collaboration will use capacitive isolation to provide 3kV of isolation without a transformer, which will enable new form factors and eliminate the largest component on an ac-dc power supply.

Helix Semiconductors recently demonstrated its technology to a number of Tier One power supply OEMs. HS200 evaluation boards are being offered in three configurations: single 12V output, triple 24V/12V/6V outputs, and a regulated 5V output. Each evaluation board is self-contained and ready for use. Wiring diagrams, schematics, BOM, and Gerber files are provided.

Helix Semiconductors
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