Powering energy-efficient embedded systems in a cluttered environment

Embedded systems are everywhere on the battlefield-in unmanned vehicles, ground vehicles, on the backs and hands of warfighters-sitting in the field gathering data, and everywhere in-between. All these systems rely on one thing in common, and that's power.

As demands on embedded systems grow, and the need for decreasing size, weight, and power become more clear, power supplies are making the leap to increased efficiency, lighter weight, and smaller size.

Energy-efficient embedded systems often must function in environ- ments where power is at a premium, and run at low power.

Having an efficient power supply is important. Power supplies are one of the largest factors in the efficiency of a system, particularly when they are converting electricity from AC to DC power (and vice versa), or changing the voltage. "One big place you can achieve efficiency [in a system] is in power supply design," says Martin Sweeney, lead project engineer at Parvus Corp. in Salt Lake City."

Power supplies must be able to convert power while protecting the system they serve from surges and electromagnetic interference.
Power supplies must be able to convert power while protecting the system they serve from surges and electromagnetic interference.

Efficiency is key

Efficient power supplies are important in systems where power is limited. A vehicle may have several systems running inside of it, and that means each system is running on shared power. Having more efficient systems means being able to fit more on a single vehicle, making it more valuable and useful to the mission. "One way to reduce the power budget of a system is to have a more efficient power supply," Sweeney says.

An efficient power supply not only is important for running electronics, but also means less wasted power and less waste heat. "The better the efficiency, the less heat is produced by the power supply," Sweeney says.

One way to achieve enhance efficiency in a power supply is to have zero-crossover on switching. There are many different approaches to achieving zero-crossover, but the primary objective involves converting power by turning the switch from on to off at zero volts.

Ruggedization and interference

Where power efficiency is key, power supplies need to guard against several kinds of threats.

It's important that power supplies be able to withstand power surges and guarantee system safety. The technology to protect against surges remains largely unchanged, with diodes that clamp off voltages once they reach a certain point, and circuits that prevent overvoltage from occurring.

Power supplies in these systems need to protect themselves, particularly in the cluttered environment of a combat vehicle, but they also must prevent their own functions from interfering with other systems. "They try to cover it from both ends, prevent stuff from emitting and bulletproof the other boxes from the emissions," Sweeney says. "For the emissions, you're talking about a passive filter of semiconductors, common mode choke. Generally, the noise comes out in a common mode noise present in both lines: positive and ground. Once it gets onto your power line, it also radiates. It will interfere with other boxes and cables, causing them to malfunction. With interference, many different defects can happen. That's why they try to avoid that by putting radiation limits and susceptibility limits on the box."

Preventing emissions to reduce interference with other systems is commonly performed by using electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding or by using smaller current loops, filters, and wide traces.

COMPANY INFO

Absopulse Electronics Ltd

absopulse.com
Aeroflex Inc.
aeroflex.com
AJ's Power Source Inc.
ajpower.com
Analytic Systems
analyticsystems.com
Astrodyne Inc.
astrodyne.com
Behlman Electronics Inc.
behlmanpower.com
Comdel Inc.
comdel.com
ConTech
contech-us.com
CUI Inc.
cui.com
DRS Pivotal Power 902-835-7268
drspowersolutions.com
Electromech Inc.
electromechinc.com
Energy Technologies Inc.
ruggedsystems.com
Falcon Electric Inc.
falconups.com
Gaia Converter Inc.
gaia-converter.ca
HiTek Power Ltd.
hitekpower.com
International Rectifier
irf.com
Interpoint, a Crane Co.
interpoint.com
ITT Exelis Power Solutions
exelisinc.com/capabilities/Power-Systems
Kepco Inc.
kepcopower.com
Martek Power Abbott
martekpower.com
MS Kennedy Corp.
mskennedy.com
Murata Power Solutions Inc.
murata-ps.com
National Hybrid
nationalhybrid.com
North Atlantic Industries
naii.com
Parvus Corp.
parvus.com
Pduke Technology Inc.
pduke.com
Pico Electronics Inc.
picoelectronics.com
Pioneer Magnetics
pioneermag.com
Powerstax plc
powerstaxplc.com
Rantec Power Systems
rantec.com
Schaefer Inc.
schaeferpower.com
Solitron Devices, Inc.
solitrondevices.com
SynQor
synqor.com
TDK-Lambda
us.tdk-lambda.com/hp/
Teledyne Microelectronics
teledynemicro.com
Tracewell Systems
tracewellsystems.com
Transistor Devices Inc. (TDI Power)
tdipower.com/
UltraVolt Inc.
ultravolt.com
Unipower LLC
unipowerco.com
Vicor Corp.
vicr.com
Vishay Intertechnology Inc.
vishay.com
VPT Inc.
vpt-inc.com
XP Power
xppower.com




Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:


  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles


Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:


  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles

Military & Aerospace Photos

Most Popular Articles

Related Products

XPedite5205 | Embedded Services Router (ESR) with Cisco IOS® on an XMC/PMC Module

The XPedite5205 XMC/PMC-based Embedded Services Router (ESR) router runs Cisco IOS® Software with...

MasterSil 152

Low viscosity MasterSil 152 is a two component silicone system that cures when exposed to air at ...

MasterSil 705TC

One component MasterSil 705TC is a thermally conductive, electrically isolating silicone for bond...

Super Gel 9AO

Featuring resounding softness and dimensional stability, Super Gel 9AO is a two component system ...

EP90FR-HFL

Flame retardant EP90FR-HFL is a toughened epoxy that passes FAR standard 14 CFR 25.853(a). Theref...

EP21LVSP6

Suitable for large castings, EP21LVSP6 is a room temperature curing system with a long open time ...

Product # 2161 - Low Harmonic Distortion Three Phase 9 KW AC-DC Power Supply

Multi-kilowatt AC-DC power supply operates from 115 Vrms, three phase, 60 Hz, MIL-STD-1399 Sectio...

EMI Filters

EMI Filters are designed as part of our AC-DC and DC-DC products. They can be made stand-alone to...

Product # 1930 - Single Output 500 W AC-DC Power Supply

Low voltage AC-DC single output power supply incorporates standard high density converters to pro...

Inverters

Various 60 Hz Square Wave Inverters available. The one shown, Product # 2124, converts +150 VDC t...

Related Companies

Master Bond

For over 35 years, Master Bond has been supplying aerospace and defense manufacturers with custom formulated compound...

United Electronic Industries Inc

UEI is a leader in the PC/Ethernet data acquisition and control, Data Logger/Recorder and Programmable Automation Con...

Advanced Conversion Technology Inc

ACT designs and manufactures, since 1981, an extensive range of AC-DC and DC-DC power supplies (switching, linear, ra...

Intersil

Specializes in the design and manufacture of high performance analog semiconductors, Products include amplifiers, ana...

JuiceBox Energy Inc

JuiceBox Energy develops, engineers and manufactures advanced energy storage systems for residential, government and ...

VPT Inc

VPT, Inc. is a global leader in providing power conversion solutions for use in avionics, military, and space applica...

Electronic Development Labs Inc (EDL)

Since 1943, EDL has strived to provide quality products, outstanding customer service, and superior technical support...

North Atlantic Industries Inc

The top 10 defense companies worldwide rely  on NAI Solutions NAI is a leading independent provider of specializ...

TXO Systems Ltd

TXO Systems is the world’s leading telecoms network asset management specialist. Founded in 2005 and operating on fiv...

PTC

PTC (Nasdaq: PTC) delivers technology solutions that transform the way companies create, operate and service their pr...
Wire News provided by   

Press Releases

Model INCX-4001

The INCX-4001 consists of a high quality audio transceiver specifically designed to implement a complete fiber optic intercom.

Model PS-1210

The PS-1210 is a 1A, 12VDC stand-alone or rack mountable non-switcher (no RF noise) power supply.

Model OS-3121

Optical switches are utilized to disconnect, bypass and reroute fiber optic communications. All of these optical switches are purely optical path, there is no optical to e...

Webcasts

New Design Tools That Help You Develop Radar That Sees the Un-seeable and Detects the Undetectable

Xilinx EW/ISR System Architect, Luke Miller, has new tricks and he’s going to tell you all about them in a new Xilinx Webinar—for free. His Webinar will cover new ways to implement Radar functions including ...
Sponsored by:

The Latest from Paris Air Show 2015

All Access Sponsors


Mil & Aero Magazine

May 2015
Volume 26, Issue 5
file

Download Our Apps



iPhone

iPad

Android

Follow Us On...



Newsletters

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information
SUBSCRIBE

Cyber Security

Monthly newsletter covering cyber warfare, cyber security, information warfare, and information security technologies, products, contracts, and procurement opportunities
SUBSCRIBE

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers
SUBSCRIBE

Electronic Warfare

Quarterly newsletter covering technologies and applications in electronic warfare, cyber warfare, optical warfare, and spectrum warfare.
SUBSCRIBE

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications
SUBSCRIBE

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles
SUBSCRIBE