LED driver offers enhanced functionality for front and rear light

May 15, 2014 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
With LED headlights becoming more and more the standard lighting technology even in the compact and subcompact vehicles class, automotive OEMS and suppliers are focusing on cost effectiveness and versatility for the LED drivers. Now Texas Instruments introduced the automotive industry's first two-channel switching LED driver for front lights and the only linear LED driver with single short LED detection for rear lights. Plus, TI's new chips offer multiple dimming options.

Unlike other LED drivers in the market, the TPS92630-Q1 and TPS92602-Q1 feature both high-side current sense dimming and pulse width modulation (PWM) dimming capabilities, as well as full diagnostic and thermal management, which helps designers create flexible lighting systems that meet many countries' differing traffic regulations.

Key features and benefits of the TPS92630-Q1 for automotive rear lights include single LED short detection and full diagnostic capabilities. This gives designers flexibility to meet different countries' traffic regulations. The multi-chip fault bus connection supports up to 15 IC connections on one bus and supports easy control logic without an extra microcontroller, which saves valuable board space and cost, compared to previous generations. Thermal current fold-back with programmable threshold prevents LED flickering in thermal shut down situations.

The TPS92602-Q1, designed for automotive front lights, is the industry's first two-channel switching LED driver: Each channel can support a multitude of topologies – buck, boost, buck-boost, SEPIC, and flyback, to name a few – which saves board space and cost. The device supports both linear analog dimming with high-side current sensing and PWM dimming with high-side PMOS FET. Thus, customers can develop simple, robust designs. A dedicated diagnostic pin sends normal status and fault information to the body control module for flexible control. The device switches between constant current and constant voltage mode for LED open protection.

The TPS92630-Q1 is available in a 16-pin HTSSOP package priced at US$0.90 in 1,000-unit quantities. The TPS92602-Q1 is available in a 28-pin HTSSOP package priced at US$3.00 in 1,000-unit quantities.

For more information or to order samples, visit www.ti.com/tps92630q1-pr and www.ti.com/tps92602q1-pr.