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Cypress Automotive LED Driver Enables Smaller, More Cost-Effective Front Lighting Systems
LAS VEGAS—CES 2016—LED usage for automotive front lighting applications is increasing dramatically, pushing projected LED driver demand to 120 million units by 2020. Headlights, daytime running lights, clearance lights, fog lights, and turn lights are all examples where LEDs are now commonly used due to their power, cost, and size benefits.
According to a release from Cypress Semiconductor Corp., a new LED driver from Cypress is making LED front lighting systems smaller and more cost effective. The automotive LED driver is said to be unique in its ability to drive a single LED at a 2.1-MHz switching frequency, which enables a compact solution that uses small, inexpensive inductors, reducing physical size and bill-of-materials costs.
“LEDs use less power and are smaller in size than traditional bulbs, offering auto makers the flexibility to create signature lighting effects for their vehicles,” said Kiyoe Nagaya, vice president of the Analog Business Unit at Cypress, in a press release. “Cypress has raised the bar in automotive front lighting with this compelling LED driver solution that can drive a single LED without large, expensive inductors.”
In addition, Cypress’s new S6BL111A Automotive LED Drivers feature an input voltage range of 4.5-42 V that encompasses extreme operating conditions, such as cold-cranking—when the automobile engine starter draws an excessive amount of current due to starting the engine in cold temperatures—or load dump—a power surge that occurs when an automobile battery is disconnected while the alternator is supplying current during engine operation.
The S6BL111A is a one-channel 1A output LED driver that supports both analog and PWM dimming functions, enabling fine brightness control. The device switching frequency can be set between 205 kHz and 2.1 MHz, with high output current accuracy of +/-2%. The driver also facilitates the design of electrical system safeguards by including System Safety Functions, such as over current and voltage protection, as well as the ability to mask undesired LED OPEN diagnosis during cold cranking.
Cypress offers a related kit to help designers evaluate its automotive LED technology. The Automotive LED Driver Evaluation Kit (CYALKIT-L01, CYALKIT-L02) includes an S6BL111A driver, automotive-grade peripheral components, external pins to easily monitor waveforms at each test point, and auxiliary PCB patterns to easily change circuits and add components.
The new S6BL111A driver is currently sampling, with production expected in the second quarter of 2016. It is available in a 16-pin HTSSOP package.
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