Lattice unveils scalable star topology power management architecture

May 07, 2012 // By Paul Buckley
Lattice Semiconductor Corporation has introduced a scalable, in-system upgradable, star topology power management architecture that can be used across a wide range of circuit boards requiring more than 12 power supply rails.

Lattice has made available two new application notes for the company’s award winning Platform Manager devices that will enable customers to quickly adopt the new architecture.  

“The number of power supply rails in a circuit board has been steadily increasing,” said Shakeel Peera, Director of Strategic Marketing for Lattice Semiconductor.  “These new application notes help expedite implementation of a centralized, scalable and flexible power management algorithm within a single Platform Manager device.” 

Power management functions include supply sequencing, monitoring, hot-swap control, reset and other supervisory signal generation.  The complexity of power management functions grows significantly when the number of circuit board power supplies increases.  The solution often demands the use of multiple power management devices.  As a result, designers typically are forced to partition the overall power management task and implement it using distributed algorithms in multiple devices, a costly and time consuming approach.  The inadequacies of this approach become apparent only during the board debug stage, forcing board re-spin and costly project delays.  The integrated power management approach made possible by the Platform Manager devices, on the other hand, reduces cost and increases board reliability. 

The application notes describe unrestricted access to power supply status indicators and the ability to control all board management functions.  Designers are easily able to modify their algorithm to meet unforeseen power management requirements and minimize the need for a board re-spin.

The application note entitled ‘AN6089: Scalable Centralized Power Management with Field Upgrade Support’ describes how the Platform Manager device can be used as a centralized controller to implement flexible sequencing and precision monitoring of up to 36 power supply rails on a circuit board. The note also discusses the use of a star topology and fast serial interface to provide a seamless, scalable solution to manage up to 36 power supply rails using additional Lattice Power Manager II devices.

The application note entitled ‘AN6088:  Fail-Safe Sequencing During Field Upgrades with Platform