Learn the basics of power switches

18th January 2019
Alex Lynn

A Power Switch provides an electrical connection from a voltage source or ground to a load. A power switch saves power across multiple voltage rails and protects subsystems from damage. It also provides enhanced component protection, inrush current protection, and minimises printed-circuit board (PCB) size.

There are several power switch topologies with different features that address different applications. Load Switches establish the power switch foundation by providing safe and reliable distribution of power. Applications typically using load switches include power distribution, power sequencing, inrush current control, and reduced current leakage. Integrated Power MUX devices are similar to load switches and can seamlessly switch between different input power sources while providing protection features.

eFuses and Hot Swap controllers offer additional power path protection features such as current sense monitoring, current limiting, undervoltage and overvoltage protection, and thermal shutdown. This makes these devices ideal for hot-plug and transient events that would otherwise damage system components. These benefits help reduce system maintenance costs and maximise equipment uptime.

To read the full paper from Texas Instruments, click here.

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