CAPACITOR SELECTION FOR DC/DC CONVERTERS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO PREVENT EARLY FAILURES, AND REDUCE SWITCHING NOISE TI – Silicon Valley Analog in Santa Clara, California, USA This course written by: SIMPLE SWITCHER® Applications Team Members: • Alan Martin • Marc Davis-Marsh • Giuseppe Pinto • Ismail Jorio Additional material provided by Chuck Tinsley of capacitor manufacturer KEMET The SIMPLE SWITCHER® Experience Easy-to-Use ICs Power Modules WEBENCH® Power Designer • Enables designers at any level to create a power supply easily and quickly • Reduces overall design time with proven solutions Regulators Reference Designs Controllers Design Tools • Delivers faster time to market Table of Contents Capacitors types for DC/DC Conversion Electrolytic Typical Characteristics Ceramic Advantages and Disadvantages Tantalum Failure Modes Polymer Selection Process Advanced Applications in DC/DC Converters Buck RMS current ratings by topology Measurement of capacitor parasitics Boost Estimating output voltage ripple and transient response Simple method to reduce high frequency noise in SMPS CAPACITOR TYPES What is a Capacitor? » Capacitance = The ability to store charge in an electric field. Capacitor Chemistry - Value and Voltage Rating Electrolytic 100uF 10000u F Capacitance Polymer Tantalum 0.1uF100uF X5R X5R/X7R COG 1pF – 0.1uF Voltage 2V 4V 16V 25V 50V 100V Aluminum Electrolytics - Overview » » » » » » Least expensive capacitors for bulk capacitance » Multiple vendors » Small size, surface mountable How is it made? » Etched foil with liquid electrolyte » Placed in a can with a seal/vent Highest ESR Low Frequency Cap roll off due to higher ESR Wear Out Mechanisms lead to – limited lifetime » Liquid electrolyte – with a vent » Cap changes over time with voltage and temp » ESR changes over time Mounting » High shock and vibration can cause failure Aluminum Electrolytics - Packaging » » Through hole versions, usually in a round can. » Large ones have screw terminals or solder lugs » Radial or axial leads » Non SMT may have higher inductance because of long leads Surface mountable versions, are modified from radial leaded versions. » SMT versions usually have the capacitor value visibly printed on can. » SMT versions may use letter codes instead of numeric rating. - + - + Aluminum Electrolytics - Advantages » Low cost » Mature technology with low cost materials » Long history » Industry started in the 1930s » Many manufacturers to choose from » High capacitance values available » Only choice for SMPS that need high voltage and high capacitance Aluminum Electrolytics - Disadvantages » Large swings in ESR vs temperature » Cold temps have 4 - 8x higher ESR than room temps Aluminum Electrolytics - Disadvantages » Large Parasitics » » » » » High ESR (Effective Series Resistance) High ESL – (Effective Series Inductance). Electrolytic capacitors eventually degrade over the life of the product. » The electrolyte eventually dries out. » Long term storage may cause the Aluminum oxide barrier layer to de-form. – Capacitance drops – ESR increases. • Higher ESR causes more internal heat causing the electrolyte to dry out even faster • This effect is worse at high temperatures » Lesson: don’t use “old stock” aluminum capacitors in your product Needs a ceramic in parallel for most switch mode applications » High ESR and ESL can cause SMPS malfunction Have measurable DC leakage current » Probably not an issue in power circuits – Leakage current can be a problem in timing circuits Aluminum Electrolytics – Venting Failure » Fails open or shorted » Catastrophic explosive venting » From over-voltage of the capacitor » From exceeding the ripple current rating of a capacitor – May have the same effect as overvoltage, but it takes longer for the capacitor to overheat and vent 450V rated capacitors after accidental application of 600V Ceramics - Overview » Lowest Cost devices » » » Primarily for decoupling and bypass applications » Multiple vendors, sizes » Surface mountable How is it made? » Alternating layers of electrodes and ceramic dielectric materials Things to watch out for with Class 2 Dielectrics i.e. X5R, X7R … » » » » Voltage bias effect Temperature effects Ageing – 2%/decade hour for X7R – 5%/decade hour for X5R – Starts decay after soldering High Q – Frequency selective Ceramic Dielectric – 3 Character Codes Class 1: (Best Performance) Class 2: (Higher Capacitance) » » Temperature Coefficient Decoder Typical Values: » NP0, C0G, values up to 100,000 pF Temperature & Capacitance Tolerance Decoder Typical Values: » X5R, X7R, values up to 150 uF Ceramic Capacitors - Advantages » Low Cost » Mature technology with low cost materials » Many Manufacturers to choose from. » Reliable and rugged » Extremely tolerant of over voltage surges » Best Choice for local bypassing » Not Polarized » Lowest effective series resistance (Low ESR) » several milliohms » Leads to high RMS current rating » Low effective series inductance (Low ESL) » < 2nH Ceramic Capacitors - Disadvantages » Capacitance limited to around 150 uF / 6.3V » Large body sizes prone to cracking with PCB flexing Several small units in parallel may be a better choice » Have both a voltage and temperature coefficient that reduces capacitance value » Some large package size units exhibit piezo-electric audible “singing” » Difficult to control. (Ceramic speaker effect.) » More noticeable with Class 2 dielectrics » Incomplete data sheets! » ESR, ESL, SRF and Ripple Current rating often missing from data sheets » Contact the manufacturer for ripple current » Capacitance value not printed on SMT device package. » Impossible to visually inspect for value once mounted on the PCB » Some power supply circuits are not stable with ceramic output capacitors » Usually LDOs and parts using COT control Ceramics - Cracking » Flex cracking – Number 1 failure mode! » Cracks formed after mounting to PCB – Mechanically stressed after assembly – Larger parts generate cracks more easily – Usually fails shorted Voltage Bias Effect Including Case Size X5R, 16V Rated Capacitors Voltage de-rating Class 1 Dielectrics COG etc do not require voltage derating. 1uF 0603 1uF 1206 1uF 0805 Capacitance decreases more quickly with smaller case sizes Class 2 Dielectrics such as X7R and X5R, lose significant capacitance as you approach the rated voltage. Ceramic Capacitance Change Due To Temperature » AVX Capacitor X5R dielectric – typical of any brand » You lose another 10% over temperature Y5V Dielectric Characteristics DO NOT USE Y5V and Z5U ceramic dielectrics for power supply designs Tantalum – Overview (MnO2 based) » » » High capacitance per unit volume technology » Small package sizes available – Thin devices are available How is it made? » Tantalum anode pressed around a tantalum wire » Oxide grown on surface » Cathode formed by dipping and heat conversion MnÆMnO » Epoxy encapsulated 2 Old technology » Requires 50% Voltage de-rating – PPM failure rates increase exponentially above 50% voltage de-rating » Can fail explosively » High ESR compared to polymer types » Fairly low cap roll off vs. frequency Tantalum Model Solid Tantalum Capacitors - Packaging - + » Usually rectangular surface mount technology – SMT machine mountable » Capacitance ratings for 1 uF to 1,000 uF + - + Solid Tantalum Capacitors - Advantages » Lots of capacitance in a small package. » 1uF to 1000uF max » Medium-high effective series resistance (Low ESR) » 10 to 500 milliohms » Medium level of RMS current » Low effective series inductance (Low ESL) » < 3nH » Numerous manufacturers » Good datasheet vs. electrolytic Solid Tantalum Capacitors - Disadvantages » Limited voltage range of 50V rating (max) » Therefore, only reliable for operating voltages less than 25 to 35VDC » Fairly high in cost » Historically tantalum has had supply shortages » Limited in-rush surge current capability » Do not use tantalum for hot pluggable input capacitors! Don’t use tantalum to hot plug! Solid Tantalum Capacitors – Application Safety » » » » ALWAYS observe voltage polarity DO NOT exceed voltage rating DO NOT exceed inrush surge rating Can fail catastrophically if misapplied » Can fail open or short Polymer - Overview » Highest capacitance per unit volume technology » Small package sizes available » How is tantalum polymer made? » Tantalum anode pressed around a tantalum wire » Oxide grown on surface » Cathode formed by dipping into Monomer and cured at room temperature » Epoxy encapsulated » Lower ESR vs. MnO2-based tantalums » Higher frequency operation – over a MHz it still looks like a cap! » Lower power dissipation – Higher ripple current capability – May need less capacitance Polymer & Organic Capacitors Packaging » SMT Block style similar to tantalum » Round / Radial versions in SMT and throughhole » Types: Tantalum polymer / Aluminum polymer / Organic semiconductor - + + + - Kemet Tantalum Polymer PosCap OSCON Polymer & Organic Capacitors Advantages » Low ESR, but not as low as equivalent ceramic » Low ESL depending on construction method » New technology designed for SMPS » Can be very low profile » High capacitance per unit volume » Much better performance than aluminum electrolytic and much smaller in size » No voltage coefficient » Viable alternative to solid tantalum Polymer - Reliability » Voltage de-rating is 10 - 20% depending on rated voltage » PPM failure rates significantly reduced » Can withstand higher transient voltages Polymer & Organic Capacitors Disadvantages » High cost » Voltage surges capability depends on chemistry » OSCON very intolerant of voltage surges » Tend to be from a single supplier » May have availability issues Polymer & Organic Capacitors – Failure Mode » Tantalum polymer » Less prone to catastrophic failure than solid tantalum, but will still vent and emit smoke » Organic (OSCON) » Emits noxious smoke Capacitor Chemistry – General Parameters DC/DC CONVERTER TOPOLOGIES Capacitor Selection for DC/DC Converters » Design factors that are known before selecting capacitors: » Switching frequency: Fsw ; from 50 KHz (high power) to 6 MHz (low power) » Input voltage range: VIN » Output voltage: VOUT » Switch duty factor: Duty Cycle (D) ~ VOUT/VIN (for Buck/Step Down) » Output current: IOUT » Inductance: L is usually designed such that the ripple current is ~30% of IOUT at the switching frequency » Topology: chosen in architectural stage Capacitor Selection for DC/DC Converters » RMS current of a capacitor is one of the most important specifications for capacitor reliability » It also affects the converter’s performance and varies by topology » Self-heating: proportional to RMS current and internal losses » Voltage ripple: higher RMS current leads to larger voltage ripple » Let’s calculate RMS current for different topologies Common Topologies - BUCK Buck Converter Switching Current exist in the input side Boost Converter Buck-Boost Converter Critical path Common Topologies - BUCK Buck Converter Boost Converter Input Capacitor RMS Current Output Capacitor RMS Current Buck-Boost Converter Common Topologies - BOOST Buck Converter Boost Converter Buck-Boost Converter Critical path Common Topologies - BOOST Buck Converter Boost Converter Input Capacitor RMS Current Output Capacitor RMS Current Buck-Boost Converter Common Topologies – BUCK BOOST Non-Inverting Buck Converter Boost Converter Buck-Boost Converter Inverting Critical path Common Topologies – BUCK BOOST Buck Converter Non-Inverting Mode 1 (Buck) Mode 2 (Boost) Boost Converter Buck-Boost Converter Input Cap RMS Current Input Cap RMS Current Output Cap RMS Current Output Cap RMS Current Additional Topologies SLUW001A CAPACITOR PARASITICS Ideal Capacitor Compared to Actual Capacitor You get this You buy this Voltage and Temperature De-rated Capacitance (ESL) Effective Series Inductance 22uF 4V X5R 0603 Ceramic - Parasitic inductance term (ESR) Effective Series Resistance - Parasitic resistance term Get three parts for the price of one! Important to Know Your Parasitics » » Equipment to use to measure capacitor parasitic elements RLC Analyzer » » RF Network Analyzer » » » » » Some can apply DC bias DC bias can easily damage analyzer source and receiver inputs AC performance measurement very accurate Agilent (aka Hewlett Packard) i.e. HP3755A goes to 200MHz Many other brands Frequency Response Analyzer » » » Allows DC bias so voltage coefficient can be measured, RLC results are less accurate, frequency range is lower than network analyzer 30 MHz max - usually just 1 or 2 MHz range; may allow plotting on reactance paper with line of constant capacitance and constant inductance; FRA is also used for loop stability analysis Brands : Venable Industries, Ridley (A/P) and several others Æ Measure the parasitic terms and include them in the design Å First Pass Parasitic Inductance for Ceramics First Pass Trace Inductance for FR-4, Microstrip Typical Inductance for a 2500um (60mil) wide 1oz Trace 19.5 nH / inch, 19.5pH / mil , 767pH / mm Typical Inductance for a 250um wide 1oz Trace 26.4 nH / inch, 26.4pH / mil , 1.039nH / mm From ARRL Handbook First Pass Trace Inductance for Via From Dr. Howard Johnson - http://www.signalintegrity.com/Pubs/edn/ParasiticInductance.htm. Comparison of Capacitor Types Using Frequency Response Analyzer (Shown in reactance coordinate system) 5 different types of 22uF capacitor Comparative Performance of Different Capacitor Types Using RF Network Analyzer Same Five 22uF Capacitors 1.0 Ohm Le a de d 0.316 Ohm OS -C Ta ON n t Po alu s- C m ap Aluminum Electrolytic 0.01 Ohm 45 Deg 0 deg Ce r am ic 0.1 Ohm 0.0316 Ohm 90 deg -45 deg -90 deg Output Voltage Ripple by Chemistry Inductor Current Ceramic Tantalum Polymer OSCON Electrolytic This plot shows a comparison of the output voltage ripple of a buck converter using 4 different capacitor chemistries All caps = 47uF; Scale = 20mV/div Output Caps Selection – Output Ripple Analysis (Simplified Formula) » A simplified equation can be derived by calculating the fundamental component of the output ripple voltage as: There is an overestimation of the needed output cap nearby the MID ESR area Capacitor - Selection Process Summary Electrical specifications: » Electrical performance » RMS Current in the capacitor – Look for RMS current equation in the chosen DC/DC topology » Applied voltage at the capacitor – De-rate the capacitor based on the chemistry Remember to de-rate voltage by at least – – – – 20% for all chemistries 50% for tantalum to improve reliability 50% for class 2 ceramics to decrease capacitance lost to DC biasing Note: Capacitor data sheet MUST include 100kHz data if the capacitor is to be applied in a switch mode power supply (SMPS). 120 Hz only versions are not suitable for SMPS Consider NP0 (C0G), X7R, X5R and X7S ceramic dielectrics* - in this order – DO NOT USE Y5V » Capacitor impedance » Does this capacitor chemistry look inductive at the frequency of interest? Capacitor - Selection Process Summary » Transient and stability requirements » Size bulk capacitance based upon voltage deviation requirements » Check that the selected capacitor meets stability requirements for the part » Most designs use a combinations of technologies » Tantalums or Aluminum Electrolytics for bulk Capacitance » Ceramics for decoupling and bypass » Selection might also depend on mechanical challenges » Vibration, Temperature,Cooling » Lifetime comes into play » Ceramics and polymer have improved lifetime over electrolytic and tantalum » Costs - Tradeoffs » Component cost vs. total cost of ownership PARALLELING CAPACITORS TO REDUCE HIGH FREQUENCY OUTPUT VOLTAGE RIPPLE A Technique for Reducing High Frequency Output Noise » If the output capacitor(s) is not ceramic; then adding a small ceramic(s) in parallel with the output will reduce high frequency ripple » Choose a ceramic capacitor that has an impedance null (self resonance) that is the same as the frequency to be attenuated » One, two or three small ceramics can give 10X improvement (-20 dB) High Frequency Ripple Switch waveform (scope trigger) Vout ripple w/ 20 MHz bandwidth (bw) 5 mV /div Æ 10 mv p-p HF spikes ignored ! Use Zoom Function to Measure Ring Frequency Timebase Zoomed traces 20 MHz bw Need to add 470 pF 0603 bypass SRF ~ 300 MHz 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 100 mV/div 2 GHz bw 100 mV/div Å 300MHz ring Continue the Method Timebase Zoomed traces 20 MHz bw 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 100 mV/div 2 GHz bw 100 mV/div Å 115 MHz ring Measured after adding a 470 pF 0603 but before adding 2200pF 0603 Continue the Method Timebase Zoomed traces 20 MHz bw 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 100 mV/div 2 GHz bw 100 mV/div Å 60 MHz ring Measured after adding a 470pF 0603 and a 2200pF 0603 but before 4700pF 0805 Results After 3rd Added Small Capacitor 20 MHz bw 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 100 mV/div 2 GHz bw 100 mV/div ÅRing ~377MHz Measured after adding a 470pF 0603, 2200pF 0603, and 4700pF 0805 Final Amplitude Improvement Results 20 MHz bw 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 10 mV/div 2 GHz bw 10 mV/div 20 mV p-p @ 20MHz bw 80 mV p-p @ 200MHz bw After 470pF 2200pF 4700pF Starting Point for Comparison - 3 caps Removed 20 MHz bw 10 mV/div 200 MHz bw 200 mV/div 2 GHz bw 200 mV/div 696mVp-p @ 200MHz bw Final Schematic and BOM: 15 mins. Later L1 3.3µH 6A 1.2VDC OUT @ 5A +3.3VDC OUT COUT2 470 pF NP0 (C0G) GND Specialty Polymer 800 kHz Buck Switcher COUT1 220µF 6.3V 0.0075 ohm GND COUT3 470 pF 2200pF NP0 (C0G) GND COUT4 4700 pF X7R GND » Remember to reserve locations on the schematic and PCB for these parts » You won’t know the capacitor values until after you test the running power supply for ringing noise » Plan ahead Bench Requirements » » » 2GHz bw / 20Gsps Digital oscilloscope with zoom feature and adjustable channel bandwidth Selection of small capacitors pre-characterized by self-resonant frequency High quality interconnections with controlled impedances CH2 - 20MHz RSOURCE 1.2VDC SOURCE 49.9 SOURCE 3 CHANNEL INPUT CH3 - 200MHz 50 OHM COAX CH4 - 2GHz Example of 3 channel input adapters built for this tutorial (net 4x passive probe) Use C0G (NP0) Dielectric for High Frequency Shunt Filter Capacitors Start with manufacturer data sheets, then measure SRF on bench to confirm THANK YOU Questions?