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With an estimated $500 billion¹ invested in the electrification of mobility over the next decade, we are now in the era of the power management IC. This central component is what delivers power to all electronics in electric vehicles and in every electronic gadget we use every day. As ubiquitous as it is, the power management IC now packs incredibly complex functionality, with countless configurations that can be digitally controlled and optimized. It is this digital complexity that has resulted in building faster and more sophisticated control buses for power management ICs. These control buses are tested and characterized by the SV6E-X Mid-Frequency Digital Test Module

A New Era for Power Management ICs and PMIC Engineers

It is an exciting time for Power Management IC (PMIC) engineers, as PMICs are now more intelligent and performant than ever. In the past, PMICs lacked digital control options and were typically controlled by pin straps. However, modern ones have undergone a complete change. They are moving towards a fully integrated embedded microcontroller and embrace advanced control interfaces such as I3C or even more complex interfaces. The reason is that PMIC design engineers keep innovating on their designs and offering endless configurations for optimizing features such as power efficiency, load and line regulation, adaptive voltage levels, precision trimming, and so much more. An increasing emphasis on energy efficiency – in particular – means engineers are always finding innovative solutions to contribute to sustainable, low power devices within these integrated circuits.

Testing Power Management ICs in Electric Vehicles and Portable Devices 

As the projected unit volume of electric vehicle sales is set to reach 74.5 million globally by 2035², the way in which PMICs are tested, characterized, and validated is continuously refined. The all-new SV6E-X module easily attaches to the communication bus of any PMIC. Thus, not only does it characterize the digital buses on power management ICs and system management ICs for protocol and electrical compliance, it also provides an easy bench set up for characterizing the rest of the PMIC by becoming the main programming interface for the IC. For example, to test a certain switching mode in a buck converter, the SV6E-X can be used to digitally transmit the register commands necessary to set that switching mode. 

Simplifying the Test and Measurement Workflow with the SV6E-X

Product engineers would typically use automatic test equipment the size of a commercial generator, however, they can now modernize their workspace with a compact, feature-rich workbench that can be placed next to their laptop and display results immediately with the touch of a button. By simply connecting a device under test to the digital test module, users can automate tests through the ultra-versatile Pinetree software. 

Figure 1: Comparison and evolution of large ATE to the handheld SV6E-X module.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other than PMIC testing, the SV6E-X Mid-Frequency Digital Test Module is a complete solution for popular protocols such as Octal and Quad SPI, MIPI I3C, MIPI SoundWire, MIPI SPMI, JEDEC SidebandBus, SMBus, PMBus, and many others. The module offers users the utmost flexibility to set it up for their specific needs from a protocol analyzer, protocol exerciser, or a real-time oscilloscope. 

Are you looking for a multi-purpose all-in-one solution to test? Send us an email at info@introspect.ca.

 

 

Footnotes:

  1. Exro
  2. EV Volumes
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