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25 August 2016

Dialog enters GaN market with integrated devices targeting fast-charging power adapters

Dialog Semiconductor plc of London, UK, a fabless provider of highly integrated power management, AC/DC power conversion, solid-state lighting (SSL) and Bluetooth low-energy technology, has announced its first gallium nitride (GaN) power IC product, using the 650V GaN-on-silicon process technology of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (TSMC, the world's biggest silicon wafer foundry).

Together with Dialog's patented digital Rapid Charge power conversion controllers, the SmartGan DA8801 can enable more efficient, smaller and higher-power-density adapters compared with existing traditional silicon field-effect transistor (FET)-based designs. Dialog is initially targeting its GaN solutions at the fast-charging smartphone and computing adapter segment, where it already enjoys more than 70% market share with its power conversion controllers.

"The exceptional performance of GaN transistors allows customers to deliver more efficient and compact power adapter designs that meet today's market demands," says Mark Tyndall, senior VP corporate development & strategy. "Following our success in BCD [bipolar-CMOS-DMOS]-based power management ICs (PMICs), as an early GaN innovator, Dialog once again leads the commercialization of a new power technology into high-volume consumer applications," he adds.

The DA8801 half-bridge integrates building blocks such as gate drives and level-shifting circuits with 650V power switches to deliver an optimized solution that reduces power losses by up to 50%, with up to 94% power efficiency, says Dialog. The firm adds that the product allows seamless implementation of GaN, avoiding the complex circuitry that is needed to drive discrete GaN power switches.

The new technology also allows a reduction in the size of power electronics by up to 50%, enabling an existing typical 45W adapter design to fit into a 25W or smaller form factor. This reduction in size will enable true universal chargers for mobile devices, Dialog reckons.

"As Dialog's strategic foundry partner for power management ICs for many years, we are delighted to have expanded our relationship to collaborate closely in bringing our GaN process to the mainstream consumer market for high-volume applications," says Maria Marced, president of TSMC Europe. "Dialog's first GaN product delivers on the promise of GaN while bringing the integration to a higher level," she adds.

The DA8801 will be available in sample quantities in fourth-quarter 2016.

Tags: GaN-on-Si

Visit: www.dialog-semiconductor.com/products/DA8801

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