Microchip Sequential Linear LED Driver Targets Offline Lighting

A next-generation sequential linear LED driver for offline lighting applications is now available from Microchip Technology. The CL88020, an extension of Microchip’s CL88XX family, is designed to drive a long string of low-cost LEDs directly from the 120 VAC line input. The product allows customers to create reliable, cost-effective and compact LED lighting applications by having High Power Factor (PF) without the need for switch-mode power conversion which is typically required for LED lighting design.


The CL88020 was designed to minimize driver circuit component count to allow for a very small and efficient design. The simple design allows for a single-layered Printed Circuit Board (PCB) design. Unlike the conventional AC-DC switch mode power supply, the basic driver circuit consists of the CL88020 IC, two small ceramic capacitors and a bridge rectifier only. High-voltage capacitors, transformer or inductors, electromagnetic interference (EMI) filters or Power Factor Correction (PFC) circuitry are not required. This allows for a smaller solution size and a lower overall bill of material (BOM) cost as compared to traditional LED solutions.

Microchip | www.microchip.com

Low-Cost Tech for Large-Area OLEDs

CSEM and Sefar AG recently announced the development of an affordable method for increasing the attractiveness of OLEDs for lighting for buildings as well as consumer electronics.Thanks to a project supported by the Swiss Confederation (CTI project), the CSEM and Sefar solution is transparent but still highly conductive. The flexible electrodes are made of fabric substrates comprising flexible metallic wires and polymeric fibers that are woven together in a highly transparent and flexible polymer. These fabric substrates (SEFAR TCS Planar) are manufactured using low-cost, high-throughput processes under standard ambient clean room conditions. CSEM

The substrate is coated with a thin-film (tens of nanometers) layer of a solutionprocess conductive polymer. The high electrical conductivity of the metal wires in the fabric substrate ensures that the electrode displays high conductivity over long distances, even with an ultra-thin layer of the conductive polymer.

Source: CSEM

Battery-Free, Energy-Harvesting BLE Module Features nRF51822 SoC

EnOcean recently selected Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF51822 Bluetooth low energy SoC for its Dolphin PTM 215B pushbutton transmitter module, which is well suited for use in smart lighting applications. Using a miniaturize electro-dynamic energy transducer to convert motion, light, or temperature differences into electrical energy, the module is an excellent option for engineers designing flexible, energy-efficiency in smart building and IoT lighting applications.nordic nRF51822 EnOcean Dolphin

The nRF51822 was selected because harvested energy is sufficient to power wireless control of Bluetooth low energy peripherals such as smart light bulbs. A powerful multiprotocol SoC, nRF51822 is  built around a 32-bit ARM Cortex M0 CPU with 256/128 KB flash and 32/16 KB RAM. The embedded 2.4-GHz transceiver is fully compliant with Bluetooth 4.2.

Source: Nordic Semiconductor

Future-Proof, Next-Gen Wireless LED Lighting Solution

GreenPeak Technologies recently launched a wireless low-cost ambient lighting application based on the new GreenPeak GP651 communication chip that can support various ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 communication protocols. The solution can combine LED lights with smart ambient applications to provide you with the freedom to create a variety of lighting scenes. The solution supports one- , two-, and four-channel LED bulbs. You can control settings and time schedules via a Smart Home system, a smart phone, or a basic wireless switch.GreenPeak Infographic LED GP651

The GP651 is a low-cost, small footprint (QFN32), single-chip solution. Additional cost savings can be achieved because of its 125°C (257°F) spec, reducing the size of a heatsink, enabling a compact and creative product design, and reducing the complexity of manufacturing resulting in a low total BOM.

Source: GreenPeak Technologies

Lighting and Motor Control Shields for Arduino

Arduino enthusiasts will be excited to learn that Infineon Technologies has announced two new shields for RGB lighting and motor control. You can use the shields—which are compatible to Arduino Uno R3—with the XMC1100 Boot Kit, which is equipped with a 32-bit microcontroller of the XMC1000 family (uses the ARM Cortex-M0 processor).


Infineon RGB XMC1202 for Arduino

The RGB LED Lighting Shield for Arduino features an XMC1202 microcontroller with its Brightness Color Control Unit (BCCU) for LED lighting control. The high-current DC Motor Control Shield for Arduino contains the Infineon NovalithIC BTN8982TA integrated half-bridge driver for motor control.

The RGB LED Lighting Shield evaluation board enables you to use different LED light engines for fast prototyping. It has three independent output channels for flicker-free control of multicolor LEDs. The BCCU automated hardware engine provides a cost-effective LED lighting solution dimming and color mixing. You can expand the shield with a DMX interface for lighting and audio nodes or a 24-GHz radar sensor for motion detection.

The DC Motor Control Shield with BTN8982TA simplifies the prototyping of DC motor control designs. It can drive two unidirectional DC motors or one bidirectional DC motor. The shield features two NovalithIC BTN8982TA fully integrated high-current half-bridge drivers optimized for motor drive applications. The BTN8982TA includes three ICs: two power chips (one p-channel high-side MOSFET and one n-channel low-side MOSFET) and an integrated driver IC with one logic circuit to control and monitor the power. Other features include are diagnosis with current sense and slew rate adjustment.

Until end of January 2015, both the RGB Lighting Shield with XMC1202 for Arduino and the DC Motor Control Shield with BTN8982TA for Arduino will be available for purchase from Newark element14. After that, they’ll also be available from Infineon and its distributors.

Source: Infineon

Solid-State Lighting Solutions Project

Electronics system control, “green design,” and energy efficiency are important topics in industry and academia. Here we look at a project from San Jose-based Echelon Corp.’s 2007 “Control Without Limits” design competition. Designers were challenged to implement Pyxos technology in innovative systems that reduced energy consumption. Daryl Soderman and Dale Stepps (of INTELTECH Corp.) took First Prize for their Solid State Lighting Solutions project.

The Pyxos chip is on the board (Source: Echelon & Inteltech)

So, how does it work? Using the Pyxos FT network protocol, this alternative lighting project is a cost-effective, energy-efficient solution that’s well-suited for use in residential, commercial, or public buildings. You can easily embed the LED lighting and control system—which features SSL lighting, a user interface, motion detectors, and light sensors—in an existing network. In addition, you can control up to five zones in a building by using the system’s fully programmable ESB-proof touchpad.

Another view of the Pyxos chip is on the board (Source: Echelon & Inteltech)


For more information about Pyxos technology, visit www.echelon.com.

This winning project, as well as others, was promoted by Circuit Cellar based on a 2007 agreement with Echelon.