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Power Integrations’ GaN-Based InnoSwitch3 IC Delivers Significant Benefits Over Silicon Alternatives

October 20, 2019 by Luke James

Power Integrations' InnoSwitch3-CP, InnoSwitch3-EP, and InnoSwitch3-Pro ICs combine primary circuits, secondary circuits, and feedback circuits in a single surface-mounted package (SMP).

The 3 GaN-Based (Gallium-Nitride) ICs were designed to replace traditional silicon high-voltage transistors on their primary side. This reduces conduction losses during current flow and switching losses during normal operation. The result is a substantially reduced amount of wasted energy and both increased efficiency and power delivery from the space-saving InSOP 24D SMP.


Power Integrations' GaN-Based InnoSwitch ICs

Power Integrations announced the new members of its InnoSwitch 3 families of offline constant voltage/constant current (CV/CC) flyback switcher ICs in July. The new GaN-Based InnoSwitch 3 ICs feature up to 95% efficiency across the full load range and up to 100W in enclosed adapter implementations without requiring a heatsink.

On the 29th of September, moreover, Power Integrations announced that it had delivered its one-millionth InnoSwitch switcher IC. Power Integrations’ president/CEO, Balu Balakrishnan, delivered the PowiGaN gallium-nitride technology to Anker CEO Steven Yang.


Balu Balakrishnan (left) of Power Integrations delivers the one-millionth GaN-Based InnoSwitch3 integrated circuit to Steven Yang (right) of Anker

Balu Balakrishnan (left) of Power Integrations delivers the one-millionth GaN-Based InnoSwitch3 integrated circuit to Steven Yang (right) of Anker. Image credit: Power Integrations.


Yang stated:

“By using PowiGaN-based InnoSwitch3 ICs we are able to offer USB PD [power delivery] chargers that are compact, lightweight, and capable of delivering high-power output. We are excited to use this innovative new technology to help us achieve our goal to charge everything faster. We are confident this advancement will help us keep gaining positive market feedback and customer response.”


GaN-Based InnoSwitch3 IC Features

These ICs use an internally-developed high-voltage proprietary GaN switch technology that delivers up to 95% efficiency across the full load range (100 W) in an adapter without a heatsink. The very low switching and conduction losses of the PowiGaN primary switch allow the delivery of as much as 100W from the said, space-saving InSOP 24D SMP in enclosed adapter applications.

Other features include:

  • Quasi-resonant/continuous conduction mode flyback controller, high-voltage primary-side PowiGaN Switch, secondary-side sensing and sync

  • Integrated FluxLink, high-potential (HIPOT)-isolated, feedback link

  • Easily interfaces to load-directed and fast-charge protocol ICs

  • Constant power profile minimises charging time with the continuous adjustment of output current and voltage

  • Accurate CV/CC/CP (constant power), independent of external components

  • External resistor allows custom CC programming


Potential Applications

The range of potential applications for GaN-Based ICs is huge: it includes chargers and adapters for consumer products, such as laptops, smartphones, set-top boxes, gaming products, and networking gear. Other potential applications include compact USB PD adapters, high-current chargers and adapters, high-efficiency fly-back designs, and networking hardware.

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