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News

Small Timing Oscillators For Low Power Applications


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Linear Technology
: 10 August, 2010  (New Product)
Simple timing functions can be achieved easily with the TimerBlox family of small oscillators from Linear Technology
Small Timing Oscillators For Low Power Applications
Linear Technology announces the TimerBlox family, a set of simple, small, accurate and low power devices for five commonly used timing functions: voltage-controlled oscillator, low frequency oscillator, pulse width modulated oscillator, monostable pulse generator (one-shot) and delay. As a family, the TimerBlox parts provide a precision, easy-to-use solution; these parts offer a single common platform and allow the use of precise building block solutions for each function.

Making use of Linear Technology's advanced silicon oscillator technology, TimerBlox parts combine an accurate, programmable oscillator with precision circuitry and logic. Like all Linear Technology silicon oscillators, TimerBlox devices are solid state and can be operated under high acceleration, vibration and temperature extremes. TimerBlox products ensure accuracy and stability at a much higher level than typical resistor/capacitor-based oscillators. Each TimerBlox part can operate over a wide frequency or time range, and is programmed with 1 to 3 resistors. The micropower operation provides an alternative to resistor/capacitor-based timers that often require milliwatts of power.

The 20mA source and sink capability directly drives opto-isolators and transformers for electrical isolation. Fully specified over the temperature range of -40°C to 125°C, the TimerBlox parts are suitable for demanding automotive and industrial environments, where many oscillators and microcontrollers are unable to operate. The small SOT23 footprint allows each timing device to be placed at the point of use, without routing signals over long distances, and provides an ideal timer for space-limited applications such as handheld and portable devices.

“TimerBlox devices ease the design and time constraints facing today’s engineers,” says Erik Soule, General Manager for Linear Technology. “They eliminate the complexity of software programming and circuit design, while providing good accuracy, low power and a small footprint.”

Application examples and design ideas have been compiled in the TimerBlox Circuit Collection, available online. Incorporating TimerBlox parts into larger systems is simplified with a complete set of TimerBlox LTspice models. The LTspice design tool is a high performance Spice III simulator, schematic capture and waveform viewer, available for download from Linear Technology. In addition, the TimerBlox can be quickly set up using the TimerBlox Designer, an Excel-based set-up tool that generates a schematic, with part name and resistor values, and a timing diagram based on the timing function parameters. Finally, a complete line of TimerBlox demo boards are available for purchase from Linear Technology.
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