01 February 2012

Power supply chips enable longer battery life for smartphones

STMicroelectronics has announced a miniature power chip produced using an advanced technology, that it believes could see it used in nearly every new smartphone or small electronic device that has an AMOLED display.

ST currently supplies more than 80% of the world's ICs for powering AMOLED displays, which are ultra thin and, according to ST, promise even more vivid displays and wider viewing angles than current lcds.

AMOLEDs have more complex power requirements than lcds and need both a positive and negative voltage. According to ST, its new AMOLED power ICs add value to new designs by simplifying power supply circuitry. The new STOD13AS chip is produced using ST's Silicon On Insulator (SOI) process technology which is designed to ensure energy efficiency, resulting in longer battery life. Sergio Pioppo, STMicroelectronics' Handheld & Portable Consumer business unit director, said: "This breakthrough device extends ST's lead in AMOLED power integration just as display producers bring next generation capacity on stream, allowing AMOLEDs to be used in many new product designs."

The STOD13AS is the successor to ST's STOD03A and integrates the step up and inverting dc/dc converters needed to generate the positive and negative supplies on the same chip. Other enhancements include increased display-driving capability, additional short circuit and overload protection modes, Enable pin (which allows the application to completely turn off the STOD13AS when it doesn't need to use the display) and pulse skipping operation that optimises efficiency when the display is consuming minimal power.

The STOD13AS is in volume production now, in the DFN12L 3 x 3mm package.

Chris Shaw

Supporting Information


STMicroelectronics NV

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