Free Download: DC/DC Converter Protection

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One of the functions of a DC/DC converter is to protect the application. At the most simple level, this protection consists of matching the load to the primary power supply and stabilising the output voltage against input overvoltages and undervoltages, but a DC/DC converter is also a significant element ensuring system fault protection. For example, output overload limiting and short-circuit protection not only stops the converter from being damaged if the load fails, but also can protect the load from further damage by limiting the output power during a fault condition. In an application with several identical circuits or channels each separately powered by individual DC/DC converters, a fault in one output channel will not affect the other outputs, thus making the system single fault tolerant. Other converter protection features, such as over-temperature shut-down, are primarily designed to safeguard the converter from permanent damage caused by internal component overheating, but a side-effect is also to shut down the application if the ambient temperature gets too high, thus also protecting the components in the application from over-temperature failure.

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