WEBENCH® Linear Regulator and LDO Design Tools
Custom linear regulator design, simulation & thermal analysis
Linear and low dropout (LDO) voltage regulators are critical elements in a wide range of systems. In communication, medical, industrial, and sensing applications, linear regulators provide low noise and low ripple supply voltages to sensitive signal chain circuits. Battery powered and low-power applications take advantage of the low footprint, cost, and quiescent current offered by linear regulators. Because of this, linear regulators can be found everywhere!With over 500 TI linear regulator and LDO devices, WEBENCH® Power Designer provides a complete selection, design, and analysis environment to help you easily and confidently create a custom linear power supply for your application.
Simulation for thermal analysis of linear regulator and LDO designs
Fundamentally, a linear regulator delivers a controlled output voltage by dissipating power in its pass element as heat. A designer must ensure that a linear regulator design does not heat up beyond safe operating temperature limits to avoid long-term reliability issues and prevent untimely device failure. Furthermore, a linear regulator heats up the PCB on which it is mounted and any surrounding components. The extent of these heating effects depends on many design and environmental conditions such as PCB layout and airflow. As a result, hand calculations are only useful to obtain a rough estimate of a design’s thermal performance and cannot be used to judge if a design meets thermal design targets and requirements before going to prototype and lab evaluation.
WEBENCH WebTHERM™ is a three-dimensional heat transfer numerical simulator that takes thermal analysis to another level. It gives you thermal analysis capabilities that surpass any manual hand calculation:
- See a heat map of your linear regulator design in seconds and easily identify any extreme component temperatures and PCB hotspots
- Configure the simulated operating condition, PCB copper weight, airflow velocity, and direction to match the intended application environment
- Edit the copper areas and board size to explore design tradeoffs between area and component temperatures
All of the thermal models used in WebTHERM have been calibrated against lab measurements on real reference PCB designs.