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Applications Corner: Cloud Power
by Steven Shackell - 2018-07-09

Cloud Power is the general term used to describe power supplies that are used in the equipment used for transmission, storage, and processing of the data in the Cloud. In telecom, or transmission, there will be power supplies for the baseband unit and for the remote radio units. Server farms used for the storage and processing will also require large unintteruptible power supplies to ensure users still have access to the cloud if there is a temporary power outage. Each server will also require a power supply unit, PSU, in addition to numerous DC-DC converters to deliver Point-of-Load power.

As the Internet of Things dramatically increases the number of end points capturing some sort of data (approximately 2B devices shipped in 2017, up 54% from 2015) it is resulting in a large amount of storage needed to process and store the data. To do this large server farms are being built that are consuming large amounts of power. There will ultimately be losses in the power conversion that will generate heat. This heat generation is so large that it leads to cooling costs being one of the leading costs of operating a server farm. This leads to PSU manufacturers to constantly seek to build more efficient PSUs. In addition, to keeping cooling costs down with better efficiencies the size of the PSUs need to be reduced, so more servers can fit in the same space.

There are many different ways to transmit this data, but deploying in 2019 is the next generation of wireless connectivity, 5G. Once the 5G technology is fully utilized it will be capable of providing speeds that are greater that 10x faster than the current 4G LTE network. This increase in speeds requires higher powers that will increase the amount of power MOSFETs in each 5G radio by about 5x.

To address this ON Semiconductor offers high performance discrete solutions to successfully meet the efficieny targets of the Cloud Power market. The new high efficiency family of discrete 650 V SuperFET III MOSFETs enable cloud power supplies to achieve these higher efficiencies compared to older generations of SuperJunction devices. The SuperFET III technology is offered in three different versions: Easy Drive, FRFET, and Fast. The application and topology will determine what version should be used to gain the best efficiency.

For the secondary side, ON Semiconductor provides a full portfolio of medium and low voltage MOSFETs that have been optimized for Cloud Power supplies. The T6 technology for 30 V, 40 V, and 60 V provides the industries lowest RDSon. The new T8 technology for 25 V, 40 V, 60 V, and 80V provide the same ultra low RDSon of the T6 while further improving the switching parameters. For 80 V, 100 V, and 120 V the PTNG technology is used that provides superior RDSon and Body Diode performance. As manufacturers push the envelope of efficiency and robustness they are exploring devices such as ON Semiconductor’s 650 & 1200 V Silicon Carbide (SiC) Diodes to use in the PFC stage. The PFC is a great application to see the immediate benefit of SiC as there is essentially no reverse recovery time that causes a large amount of power loss in silicon diodes.

With the dramatic increase of IoT that are relying on the Cloud it is important that the Cloud is powered by the most efficient power supplies. ON Semiconductor is doing it’s part by providing Industry leading MOSFETs from 25 V to 650 V and developing the next generation of semiconductors in SiC. For information click here.

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