DN388 - Wide Input Range 1A LED Driver Powers High Brightness LEDs with Automotive and 12VAC Supplies

Wide Input Range 1A LED Driver Powers High Brightness LEDs
with Automotive and 12VAC Supplies – Design Note 388
John Tilly and Awo Ashiabor
Introduction
Today’s ultrabright LEDs far exceed the performance
of incandescent bulbs in both efficiency and lifetime.
Taking full advantage of these features requires a correspondingly efficient and reliable LED driver, such as the
LT® 3474. The LT3474 is a step-down 1A LED driver that
supports a variety of power sources, has a wide 4V to
36V input voltage range and is programmable to deliver
LED current from 35mA to 1A at up to 88% efficiency. It
requires minimal external circuitry and is available in a
space saving 16-lead TSSOP package.
Automotive LED Driver
Figure 1 shows the configuration of the LT3474 operating
from a 12V automotive battery input. As shown, the circuit
can tolerate voltage swings from 4V to 36V, common
in an automotive environment. With an integrated NPN
switch, boost diode and sense resistor, the LT3474 cuts
the external component count to a minimum. The high
side sense allows a grounded cathode connection, easing
wiring constraints. Both PWM and analog dimming are
available with minor circuit modification; see the LT3474
data sheet for details.
Driving LEDs from 12VAC Input
The LT3474 directly regulates LED current, maintaining constant LED current over changing VIN. The wide
input range of the LT3474 allows direct connection to
a rectified 12VAC input. Using a small input capacitor,
as shown in Figure 2, minimizes size. In this case, the
LT3474 delivers nearly 1A of LED current as shown in
Figure 3. Adding more capacitance to the input, as shown
in Figure 4, holds the input voltage above the LED voltage. In this case, the LT3474 can deliver a constant LED
current even with significant 120Hz ripple on the input
as shown in Figure 5.
, LTC and LT are registered trademarks of Linear Technology Corporation.
All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
~
12VAC
~
10µF
VIN
SHDN
SW
LT3474
63.4k
RT
BIAS
REF
OUT
VADJ
VC
VIN
4V TO 36V
2.2µF
0.22µF
VIN
BOOST
LED1
DN388 F02
SW
RT
BIAS
REF
Figure 2. Using a Diode Bridge Allows the LT3474 to Drive
an LED from a 12VAC Input
OUT
VADJ
LED
VC
GND
2.2µF
LED1
DN388 F01
Figure 1. 4V-36V Input Voltage 1A LED Driver Requires
Few Components
04/06/388
GND
1µF
10µH
LT3474
0.1µF
LED
0.22µF
SHDN
80.6k
0.22µF
6.8µH
BOOST
VIN
10V/DIV
0
ILED
500mA/DIV
0
2ms/DIV
DN388 F03
Figure 3. Using a 10µF Input Capacitance, the LT3474
Delivers Nearly 1A of LED Current with Smallest Board Size
Thermal regulation
The issue of heat management is at the core of many LED
applications. A reliable solution maintains the longevity of
the LED by keeping the LED junction temperature below
the recommended limit. One answer to this problem is
to mount massive heat sinks, wasting space and money.
Figure 6 shows a better solution. The temperature of
the LED is sensed by the thermistor mounted near the
LED and is translated into a voltage signal to the VADJ
pin. The VADJ pin reduces the current through the LED
appropriately to meet the power derating specified by the
Luxeon III Star manufacturer. Only slight modifications
to the resistor values are required to adjust the circuit
for use with other high brightness LEDs.
Conclusion
High power white LEDs are fast becoming the lighting of
choice in architectural, automotive, museum and avionic
systems due to their efficiency, high quality light and long
lifetimes. The LT3474 makes it easy to create compact,
efficient, robust and versatile LED drivers from a variety
of power supplies. Designers can now focus their time
on creating imaginative new LED applications, instead
of on LED drivers.
REF
22k
NTC
5.62k
9.31k
BC847B
~
14.7k
12VAC
220µF
~
VIN
SHDN
SW
53.6k
BIAS
REF
OUT
VADJ
LED
VC
10nF
DN388 F06
Figure 6. Compact, Economical Thermo-Regulating
Circuit. The NTC and NPN, Mounted Close to the LED,
Monitor the LED’s Temperature
LT3474
RT
GND
2.26k
0.22µF
6.8µH
BOOST
LT3474
VADJ
GND
1µF
1.2
LED1
LED CURRENT (A)
DN388 F04
Figure 4. With a 220µF Input Capacitor, the LT3474
Supplies a Constant 1A Current to the LED
MANUFACTURERS
MAXIMUM
RECOMMENDED
CURRENT
1.0
0.8
MEASURED
LED CURRENT
0.6
0.4
VIN
10V/DIV
0.2
0
ILED
500mA/DIV
0
25
35
45 55 65 75 85
CASE TEMPERATURE (°C)
95
105
DN388 F07
0
2ms/DIV
DN388 F05
Figure 5. With a 220µF Input Capacitor, the LT3474
Delivers Constant 1A LED Current with Changing Input
Voltage
Figure 7. LED Current Safely Lies Within Specified Limits
for the Luxeon III Star Power
Data Sheet Download
For applications help,
call (408) 432-1900, Ext. 2759
www.linear.com
Linear Technology Corporation
dn388f LT/TP 0406 409K • PRINTED IN THE USA
FAX: (408) 434-0507 ● www.linear.com
© LINEAR TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION 2006
1630 McCarthy Blvd., Milpitas, CA 95035-7417
(408) 432-1900
●
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