Battery fuel gauge ICs deliver low operating current

29th August 2018
Posted By : Alex Lynn
Battery fuel gauge ICs deliver low operating current

Designers of lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery powered mobile and portable devices products can improve the end user experience by extending run-time and delivering accurate battery state-of-charge (SOC) data with the MAX17262 single-cell and MAX17263 single-/multi-cell fuel-gauge ICs from Maxim Integrated Products. 

The MAX17262 features just 5.2µA quiescent current, the lowest level in its class, along with integrated current sensing. The MAX17263 features just 8.2µA quiescent current and drives three to 12 LEDs to indicate battery or system status, useful in rugged applications that do not feature a display.

Designers of electronic products powered by small Li-ion batteries struggle to extend device run-times to meet user expectations. Factors such as cycling, ageing and temperature can degrade Li-ion battery performance over time. Inaccurate SOC data from an unreliable fuel gauge forces the designer to increase the battery size or compromise the run-time by prematurely shutting the system down, even if there is usable energy available. 

Such inaccuracies can contribute to a poor user experience due to abrupt shutdown or an increase in device charging frequency. Designers also strive to get their products to market quickly due to competitive demands. Maxim’s two new fuel-gauge ICs help designers meet end-user performance expectations and time-to-market challenges.

The MAX17262 and MAX17263 combine traditional coulomb counting with the novel ModelGauge m5 EZ algorithm for high-accuracy battery SOC without requiring battery characterisation. With their low quiescent current, both fuel-gauge ICs minimise current consumption during long periods of device standby time, extending battery life in the process. 

Both also have a dynamic power feature that enables the highest possible system performance without draining the battery. In the MAX17262, an integrated RSENSE current resistor eliminates the need to use a larger discrete part, simplifying and reducing the board design. In the MAX17263, the integrated, pushbutton LED controller further minimises battery drain and alleviates the microcontroller from having to manage this function.

Raghu Raj Singh, Lead Semiconductor Equipment Analyst for Technavio, stated: “In a push to make their products more user friendly, consumer IoT device manufacturers look for solutions that are highly integrated to reduce design size. Anything that extends the operating time of the device by minimising battery drain will be viewed as a boon for these developers. Maxim’s fuel-gauge ICs are ideally suited to address both needs.”

Bakul Damle, Director of Business Management, Mobile Solutions at Maxim Integrated, added: “With these industry-leading ICs, Maxim solves many of the conflicting and difficult battery management challenges faced by designers of portable products. Maxim fuel gauge ICs empower design innovation that leads to longer run times for mobile and portable devices through industry leading features and functionality.”

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