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Intel® Atom™ Processor E6xx Series Power Management IC*: Paper


The Intel® Atom™ processor E6xx is a new embedded system on a chip (SoC), with the idea that it can serve as a high-performance, ultra-low power, and low cost single chip processor for applications such as deeply embedded IP media, networking, digital signage, and industrial control. It consists of a single low power IA CPU core, memory controller, 3D graphics, video decode and video encode engine, 2D display controller, SDVO and LVDS interfaces, Intel® High Definition Audio Controller, GPIOs, SMBUS, SPI interface connectivity to SPI flash, LPC, PCIe* controller, RTC, 8254 timer, and watchdog timer. The different sub-systems require different supply voltages and draw different amount of currents. While in operation, the power consumption of the device is the highest and power management should be designed as economically as possible. While on standby, the power consumption of the device should be reduced to the absolute minimum. Transition from standby to operation mode must be achieved as smoothly as possible, with no voltage or current spikes that could disrupt the operation of the device.

In designing an embedded system, power management is often a secondary consideration. Discrete components are initially selected for power management to give flexibility in development and debug. In later stage, these discrete components are integrated into single or dual ICs for power management. This saves space on the PCB, reduces Bill of Materials, simplifies the PCB layout, and achieves further power saving by intelligent switching, and reduction of power consumption by the power management system itself.

This article describes the solutions created during the course of engagement with Dialog Semiconductor and ROHM Semiconductor in designing the Power Management IC*.

Read the full Intel® Atom™ Processor E6xx Series Power Management IC* White Paper.