Single-channel, 2.5-A/5-A gate drivers target IGBT and SiC FET designs

February 26, 2013 // By Paul Buckley
Texas Instruments Incorporated has introduced what the company claims are the industry’s first 35-V, single-channel, output stage power management gate drivers for insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) and silicon carbide (SiC) FETs.

TI’s new UCC27531 and UCC27532 output stage gate drivers with split output provide the most efficient output drive capability, shortest propagation delay and increased system protection for isolated power designs, such as solar DC/AC inverters, uninterruptible power supplies and electric vehicle charging.

Today’s renewable energy applications require power components that safely deliver more power with greater efficiency. Designers prefer to use IGBTs or the latest SiC FETs that achieve lower power loss at greater than 400 V. Those devices also have standoff voltages up to 1,200 volts, and offer lower ON resistance than equivalent MOSFETs. They are often managed by a TI microcontroller or dedicated digital power controller, such as the UCD3138. Next-generation IGBT- and SiC FET-based designs also require both power and signal isolation from the noisy switching environment of the power stage.

The UCC27531 and UCC27532 prevent the digital controllers from operating too close to the power circuitry, extending the lifetime of isolated power designs.

The UCC27531 has a peak current of 2.5 A source and 5 A sink that allows fast charging of IGBTs and ensures reliable and efficient operation.  The device’s 17 ns typical delay improves driver efficiency.

UVLO settings and rail-to-rail output voltage provide system protection while negative input voltage handling allows the driver to support many industrial designs.  A split-output configuration improves Miller turn-on immunity and prevents damage of IGBT/MOSFET.

The new output stage drivers expand TI’s analog and digital controllers that drive IGBTs. Isolated gate drivers, such as the ISO5500, increase safety and system performance in high-current and high-voltage designs. The driver also provides proven reliability of SiO2 dielectric with stability over time, temperature and moisture. TI also has a large portfolio of single and dual 5-A high-speed, low-side power management gate drivers, such as the UCC2751x and UCC2752x families.

Availability and Pricing

The UCC27531 and UCC27532 gate drivers are available in a 6-pin, SOT-23 package and are priced at $0.75 in quantities