The Weekly Watt

By Alix Paultre, Editor-in-Chief

This has been an interesting week for power electronics if you are into motorsports, as Mercedes announced it was dropping the German DTM touring master’s competitive series and shifting those and other resources to Formula E. Porsche, who has already announced it is dropping out of LeMans Prototype Series, is following them. Racing is where the future of automotive development gets tested in the real world, and the electric car is going to be a major presence in society going forward.

Speaking of Formula E, Mouser’s Faraday Future Dragon Racing team will end their season at the Montreal ePrix on July 29th and 30th. Drivers Loic Duval and Jerome D’Ambrosio will navigate the 1.71-mile, 14-turn circuit along the St. Lawrence River on the day that is also the day Montreal will be celebrating its 375th anniversary. This is the third straight year that Mouser Electronics is sponsoring Formula E racing. The final two races of the season will take place in Montreal on July 29 and 30.

Speaking of Mouser, they are now stocking the S2-LP ultra-low power, sub-1GHz transceiver from STMicro. A successor to ST’s SPIRIT1, the S2-LP radio chip offers increased transmission range, greater selectivity, ultra-low power consumption, and high configuration flexibility for IoT applications. The device operates in the license-free ISM and Short-Range Devices bands, with additional frequencies available. The transceiver targets networked products and support connectivity to the Sigfox global network, Wireless M-Bus, 6LowPAN, and IEEE 802.15.4g standards.

When it comes to cars, object detection is a critical application. It is also an extremely useful technology for automation and robotics of any kind. In application spaces where every Coulomb is important, efficient peripheral devices are critical. Mouser Electronics recently announced availability of the PGA460 and PGA460-Q1 ultrasonic signal processors and drivers from Texas Instruments. Available in both automotive (PGA460-Q1) and non-automotive (PGA460) options, these devices are ultrasonic sensors that support wide-distance object detection at low power.

Everyone is always looking for a better FET, and Infineon never disappoints in launching cool new devices. They recently launched the OptiMOS Linear FET series, combining the state-of-the-art on-state resistance (R DS(on)) of a trench MOSFET with the wide Safe Operating Area of a planar MOSFET, addressing the trade-off between R DS(on) and linear mode capability. The OptiMOS Linear FET can operate in the saturation region of an enhanced mode MOSFET. It is well-suited for hot-swap, e-fuse, and protection applications.

Of course, nothing happens without good passive components, so any growth in availability is beneficial. KEMET announced that they expanded their SMT high-voltage multilayer ceramic capacitor portfolio in the EIA 0603 case size (1608 metric) with C0G temperature characteristics. Presented as the smallest of their kind, they can maintain operating voltages up to 1,000 VDC. The company also announced extended capacitance ranges in EIA 0805–1812 case sizes.


To learn more about the Formula E series, visit www.fiaformulae.com

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