Power, size reductions in industrial designs enabled by 12/14/16-bit ADC families

September 10, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Texas Instruments’ latest analogue-to-digital converter introduction for the industrial market is differentiated by size and power; at 1 Msample/sec It uses 234 µW, and and 1 ksample/sec, less than 1 µW.

As part of its effort to re-inforce it's “one-stop” credentials for all aspects of its industrial electronics designs (see link below) TI has introduced the ADS7042/8354. Once more, the company believes that as designers are gearing up for Internet-of-Things projects, the advent of a generation of products with very low power demand, and in very small package sizes, not only takes existing industrial design forward, but enables entirely new product concepts.

On that basis, TI presents the 7042 as more than “another SAR ADC” - these 12-, 14- and 16-bit converters, will, it says, allow system designers to reduce the size of their industrial monitoring and control applications. The ADS7042 is claimed as the smallest and lowest-power 12-bit SAR ADC, and the ADS8354 family includes the industry’s smallest 14- and 16-bit, simultaneous-sampling SAR ADCs.

The 1-MSPS ADS7042 pushes the boundaries of size and power, TI asserts, using 690 µW of power at full speed and scaling consumption down with sampling rate to “unprecedented” levels for use in ultra-low-power systems. At 1 ksample/sec the ADS7042 consumes less than 1 µW of power, enabling its use in remote system monitoring and energy harvesting applications. It can also be used in motor control, metering, and portable medical equipment, as well as space-constrained consumer applications. It can support small sensor module designs, with its 1.5 x 1.5-mm package – the power level is said to be under half that of competitive devices. A simple serial peripheral interface achieves 1-Msample/sec throughput with only a 16-MHz clock, 67% lower than alternatives, which enables a seamless connection to most low-power processors.

The 2-channel ADS8354 family includes the smallest 14- and 16-bit simultaneous sampling SAR ADCs. With data rates ranging from 600 ksample/sec- to 2 Msample/sec-per-channel, no latency and dual, independently controllable internal voltage references, the family is optimised for the industrial market, most notably motor control, DC load control, optical networking, power quality, industrial automation and programmable