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Powering ideas

23 July 2008

Moore’s Law describes a trend, whereby the capability of digital electronics doubles approximately every two years. This means that electronics and computing are advancing at an exponential rate, leading to more hi-tech components, systems and machines. Lending a helping hand with free technical and system support are PULS; a DIN Rail power supply manufacturer. The PULS sales engineers endeavour to understand, calculate and explain the best options for power so that their customers have less to worry about.

Recently, PULS embarked on a project involving a sealed motor system. The motor system was intended for remote and often hazardous environments, making the power supply requirements extremely difficult. Jumping at the chance to work on a difficult project, the PULS sales engineers worked with their customer to identify key requirements. The analysis showed that the power supply must operate in extreme cold and heat, be fitted into a completely sealed case, and be incredibly reliable.

Initially looking at the temperature requirements, PULS tested their units at 125ºC continuously for a week and found that not one unit failed. With this data, it was evident that high temperatures were not a problem and so sights were set on the -40ºC low temperature requirement. With modern power supply technology, a Negative Temperature Coefficient resistor is used to limit inrush current. However, at low temperatures, their resistance can become too high and not allow the power supply to start. This was no trouble as PULS have a patented technology to remove inrush current eliminating this problem, and with further tests, it was proven that their units had no problems starting or operating at -40ºC.

Next, PULS had to fit the unit into a cylindrical completely sealed case. To help their customer, PULS engineers measured sizes and calculated heat dissipation required for the power supply. Utilising this data, they determined that as only conduction and radiation were available to remove heat, it would be ideal to generate as little as possible. With PULS power supplies now boasting efficiencies greater than 96% and thus lowering heat created, this too proved unproblematic.

Finally, as the motor system was designed for remote locations, reliability was paramount. However, with all the extensive temperature tests, high efficiency and the PULS low component stress designs, it was a simple task to show that this too can be made easy with PULS power supplies.

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