Isolation

Considerations for Selecting Digital Isolators

 

Isolation is a means of preventing DC and uncontrolled AC currents between two parts of a system, while allowing signal and power transfer between those two parts. This isolation can be required in order to protect human operators and prevent damage to expensive processors in high voltage systems, break ground loops in communication networks, and to communicate to high-side devices. Digital isolators are a common choice when looking to achieve galvanic isolation for interfaces such as SPI, UART, I2C, RS-485, and RS232 in many different system applications, including industrial automation systems, motor drives, medical equipment, solar inverters, power supplies, and hybrid electric vehicles. This application brief identifies key considerations when selecting the right digital isolator for a given application and provides a guide for understanding the different choices from Texas Instruments (TI) broad portfolio of digital isolators.