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AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY STMicroelectronics’ automotive gate driver boosts motor-control flexibility

From Nicole Kareta

STMicroelectronics’ L9908 integrated automotive three-phase gate driver unit (GDU) operates in 12V, 24V, or 48V systems and has flexible input and output channels to fulfil numerous applications in conventional and hybrid/electric vehicles.

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By combining high integration, flexibility, and accuracy, the L9908 simplifies design, saves space, and enhances control of low-voltage fluid pumps, pumps and blowers in ventilation and cooling systems, and electronic seat controls.
By combining high integration, flexibility, and accuracy, the L9908 simplifies design, saves space, and enhances control of low-voltage fluid pumps, pumps and blowers in ventilation and cooling systems, and electronic seat controls.
(Source: gemeinfrei / Pixabay )

Dedicated source connections to the high-side and low-side FETs (field-effect transistors) of each half bridge let users configure the output channels independently to drive various types of loads. In addition, six separate PWM (pulse-width modulation) input pins allow independent management of the pre-driver stages for different motor-control strategies.
High accuracy is assured, with three differential current monitors for ground-referenced measurements and three channels for real-time phase-voltage monitoring. There is also a rich set of diagnostic and protection features.

By combining high integration, flexibility, and accuracy, the L9908 simplifies design, saves space, and enhances control of low-voltage fluid pumps, pumps and blowers in ventilation and cooling systems, and electronic seat controls. It can be also used in traction inverters for mild-hybrid internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and 48V full-electric city cars.

Moreover, the L9908’s built-in diagnostics allow use in safety-related systems such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and advanced electronic power steering (EPS), simplifying certification according to ISO 26262.

The safety features include SPI-programmable dead-time insertion with shoot-through diagnostic and protection, open-load detection, and short-to-ground and short-to-battery diagnostics. There is also an SPI-programmable temperature warning and SPI-readable junction-temperature measurement. Other diagnostics include ground-loss detection, over-voltage and under-voltage detection on the power supply pins and FET-driver supply, system-clock monitoring, SPI window watchdog, and a fault-status flag.

The L9908 is AEC-Q100 qualified and available now, in a thermally enhanced TQFP48 package.
The L9908 is AEC-Q100 qualified and available now, in a thermally enhanced TQFP48 package.
(Source: STMicroelectronics)

The flexibility to use the L9908 gate driver in single (12V), dual (24V), and 48V battery applications comes from its wide motor supply-voltage range, from 4.5V to 75V, with the ability to tolerate -14V to 95V on motor-connection pins. The on-chip logic is supplied from an internally generated 3.3V supply and digital I/Os are 3.3V- and 5V-compatible.

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