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December 5, 2016

Programmable Fabric Creates Full-function Analog Power Components

Kapil Shankar
President & CEO, AnDAPT, Inc.

Power Channels: Batteries and Portable Power, Communications Power, Digital Power, Energy Efficiency, Power Components, Switch-Mode Power

On-Demand Power Management

The AnDAPT Adaptive Multi-Rail Power (AmP™) platform delivers the industry's first, on-demand power management solution for a wide range of applications. AmP platforms integrate µAnalog elements, each with a digital wrapper, embedded on an interconnect fabric.

Customers can now build their own power management monolithic ICs on demand, in a simple three step process. First, select the appropriate size AmP platform, second, on the cloud-based WebAmP tool, drag and drop proven software (IP) based power components suitable for their application and third, compile to generate and download the personalization bit-stream to their selected platform for a custom PMIC.

Unique Technology - A New Genre

The AnDAPT AmP platform is engineered with ground-breaking, patented technology where digitally wrapped µAnalog elements are interconnected on programmable fabric to create full function analog power components such as voltage regulators, load switches, controllers, sequencers etc. The interconnect fabric eliminates issues with requirements for different interface voltages, currents, impedance, noise, isolation, etc.

While µAnalog elements are basic analog building elements, they do however locally incorporate support analog capabilities such as current sensing, current sharing, slope compensation for MOSFETs, analog signal addition-subtraction for comparators etc., to build power components in mostly analog domain, leveraging decades of expertise built by analog power engineers for best performance, efficiency and figures of merit.

When combined with flexible interconnect fabric and logic, the µAnalog elements build a variety of power components including point-of-load (POL) regulators, created on-demand. This resulting technology is a unique new genre of analog where interconnectivity between analog elements can be defined by simple connectivity or verilog constructs. In the future, AnDAPT will offer platforms for a broad spectrum of both power and non-power analog applications.

Fig1: µAnalog with digital wrappers on interconnect fabric

µAnalog Economy for High Volume

The AmP platform is built on 110nm standard BCD technology with eight layers of metal. This is a unique leading edge power technology node as it, for the first time delivers the best figures of merit/RDSON for DMOS, combined with smallest shrink of standard CMOS logic.

AmP platform die size is predominantly (>90%) µAnalog elements and is comparable to die area of analog functions on a catalog POL or custom PMIC. The interconnect fabric over-layed on top, does not consume die area, although does require higher number of metal layers with slightly higher wafer cost. Small additional die (<10%) is used for digital programmable logic.

This cost is offset by amortizing package and telemetry interface costs, over multiple rails making overall device costs lower than catalog devices, where frequently half the cost is package alone. Customers no longer have to inventory a large set of catalog POLs devices, lowering their inventory capex/opex. Combined with board area, inventory and power savings, AmP platforms are cost competitive for high volume production and not a mere prototype tool.

Additional metal layers are also effectively utilized even on the analog areas such as MOSFETs to help reduce the RDSON for best efficiencies. These metal layers also help with flip-chip versions of packages for even lower RDSON.

Analog Proficiency with Digital Flexibility

This technology delivers analog proficiency, expertise and experience along with digital flexibility for dissimilar rail integration, telemetry and even related digital logic integration.


AmP platforms are flexible, highly integrated, power efficient, cost effective and deliver superior figures of merit. Depending µAnalog connectivity, users construct power components, specific to their application needs. Also by seamlessly combining analog power rails with flexible, digital control and telemetry, an AmP device affordably integrates multiple, heterogeneous power rails with different regulator topologies and regulation methods.

Fig 2: AmP Unique Technology - µAnalog Elements (click here to zoom)

 

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