Murata Electronics has begun mass production of its LXDC2HL, 2UR, and 3EP series of micro DC-DC converters, which will reduce the board space used by buck converters in battery powered devices. Items in these series are all significantly smaller than discrete solutions, making them ideal for space savings. In most cases, the micro DC-DC converter solution occupies less than half the footprint of the same solution implemented with discrete components.
These micro DC-DC series of tiny buck converter devices are designed to be used with a 2.3 V to 5.5 V source such as a Li-ion battery. The devices use a newly developed ferrite multilayer substrate which incorporates the power inductor, enabling very low levels of conductive and emitted noise. The length of the connection between the controller IC and the inductor is close to zero, further helping reduce noise emissions. The ferrite multilayer substrate technology is a process whereby up to 50 layers of different ferrite materials are pressed together to create a three-dimensional circuit within the substrate of the device. The 2HL series requires additional input and outputs capacitors. However, the 2UR and 3EP series integrate the input and output capacitors onboard the ferrite substrate, providing an even greater space-savings advantage.
Available output voltages range from 1.0 V to 3.3 V. Typical efficiencies for these parts at 3.6 VIN / 1.8 VOUT are: 85% (2HL), 87% (2UR), and 92% (3EP). All models have an operating temperature range of -40°C to 85°C. These products have a synchronous rectifier topology and PFM/PWM auto-select function. The 2UR and 3EP series also have a forced PWM pin.