Electronic Design

Wide Input Voltage Range Buck-Boost Converter Simplifies Design of Variable Input Supplies

Design Note 413

Many of today’s portable electronic devices require the ability to operate from a variety of power sources including USB, wall adapters, and alkaline and lithium batteries. Designing a power conversion solution that is compatible with this wide array of power sources can be daunting. The LTC®3530 monolithic synchronous converter simplifi es the task by operating in both buck and boost modes over an extended input voltage range of 1.8V to 5.5V. No complicated topology is required to account for varying inputs that can be above, below or equal to the output.


The LTC3530 utilizes a proprietary switching algorithm that provides seamless transitions between buck and boost modes while simultaneously optimizing efficiency over all operating conditions. Using this advanced control algorithm, the LTC3530 is capable of high effi ciency, fixed frequency operation with input voltages that are above, below, or equal to the output voltage, while requiring only a single inductor. This capability makes the LTC3530 well suited for lithium-ion/polymer and 2-cell alkaline or NiMH applications which require a supply voltage that is within the battery voltage range. In such cases, the high effi ciency and extended input operating range of the LTC3530 offer greatly improved battery run-time, as much as 25% in some cases, over alternative solutions.

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