Issue: Nov 2009


ST's New Automotive Power-Management Chip Reduces Car-Battery Load



Enables ultra-low standby current designs with fail-safe functionality and optimized system cost

by Michael Pavey

STMicroelectronics, a world leader in automotive and power semiconductors, today unveiled its new power management chip for car body applications. The device addresses the carmakers' challenge to reduce the stand-by current consumption (quiescent current(1)), at a time when the number of power-consuming products in the car is continuously increasing. It also provides comprehensive fail-safe functionality with reduced external components and optimized overall system cost.

Minimizing quiescent current consumption in today's automotive electronic modules is critical for preserving the energy stored in the car battery. ST's L99PM62XP advanced power-management IC provides a dedicated regulator with optimized dynamic behavior, enabling periodic system activation to monitor configurable wake-up sources, coupled with comprehensive diagnostic and system-status features.

Addressing increasing system complexity, ST's new device integrates advanced fail-safe functionality to improve the sustainability and reliability of automotive electronic control units. The intrinsic fail-safe concept, including supervision of the microcontroller, supply voltages and temperatures, prevents the system from locking up under all imaginable failure conditions.

The integration of cost-efficient peripheral functions, such as high-side and low-side gate drivers, operational amplifiers and auxiliary regulators, reduces the number of external components, optimizing overall system cost.

The L99PM62XP offers compatibility with both LIN (Local Interconnect Network) and High-Speed CAN (Controller Area Network) automotive communication protocols for increased performance and versatility.

ST's newest advanced power management IC targets microcontroller-based automotive applications such as door modules, body control units and mechatronic subsystems.

The L99PM62XP is in production, with unit pricing of $2 for volumes in the range of 1,000 pieces.

About STMicroelectronics

STMicroelectronics is a global leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications with innovative semiconductor solutions. ST aims to be the undisputed leader in multimedia convergence and power applications leveraging its vast array of technologies, design expertise and combination of intellectual property portfolio, strategic partnerships and manufacturing strength. In 2008, the Company's net revenues were $9.84 billion. Further information on ST can be found at www.st.com.

(1)quiescent current is the amount of current consumed by a single component or group of components in a circuit which is in the powered but non-operating state

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