Fuel Gauge ICs Provide 2-Level Li-ion Battery Protection

Maxim Integrated has announced fuel gauge ICs which that company claims offers the most configurable settings for battery safety in the industry and uniquely allow fine tuning of voltage and current thresholds based on various temperature zones. The newest 1-cell, pack-side ICs in this portfolio are the MAX17301 and the MAX17311. These ICs also offer a secondary protection scheme in case the primary protection fails. This secondary protection scheme permanently disables the battery by overriding a secondary protector or blowing a fuse in severe fault conditions.

All ICs in the family are equipped with Maxim’s patented ModelGauge m5 EZ algorithm that delivers highest state-of-charge (SOC) accuracy that on average offers 40% better accuracy than competitive offerings and eliminates the need for battery characterization. These fuel gauges also offer the industry’s lowest quiescent current (IQ) – up to 80% lower than the nearest competitor according to Maxim, and feature SHA-256 authentication to safeguard the systems from counterfeit batteries.

Conventional battery protectors monitor voltage and current, and in some cases include temperature monitoring. These options make the system vulnerable to unexpected crashes because battery state-of-charge (SOC) isn’t factored in when triggering an undervoltage cut-off decision. The market lacks a solution that allows deeper configuration of voltage or current thresholds based on multiple temperature environments.

With a growing market of battery-operated applications, there is a need for a simple, compact solution that protects from unsafe charging conditions that can lead to extensive battery damage including over-voltage, short circuit, over/under temperature and more. Additionally, system and battery designers continue to push the limits of capacity-constrained batteries in order to provide the longest possible run-time without damaging the cell. Currently, there are very few highly-configurable solutions that are still simple to implement. Designers are also looking for a way to protect the system by ensuring that only genuine batteries are used, which can eliminate unexpected shutdowns and crashes caused by potentially unsafe, counterfeit batteries.

Key Features:

  • Advanced Battery Protection: Ensures safe charging and discharging in a wide range of applications with 2-level Li-ion protector control for abnormal voltage, current and temperature conditions. Delivers protection against counterfeiting and cloning with SHA-256 authentication and provides unique as well as dynamic key for every battery.
  • High Accuracy: Delivers best-in-class SOC accuracy without battery characterization, says Maxim. Cycle+ age forecasting provides easy-to-understand prediction of remaining battery life for battery replacement planning or to control fast-charging. Battery life logging stores the history of operating conditions experienced by the pack over its lifetime.
  • Low IQ: Supports long product shelf-life and runtime with operating IQ of 24 µA active/18 µA low power with protector FETs on and 7 µA with protector FETs off.

Pricing for products in the ModelGauge m5 EZ fuel gauge IC portfolio starts at $1.14 (1,000-up). Pricing for all evaluation kits in this portfolio is $60.

Maxim Integrated | www.maximintegrated.com

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