The idea behind ST’s VIPower(TM) technology is relatively simple. Many applications require the ability to control high power, to sense and communicate their status, and to provide device protection and have logic functions to control the power intelligently. ST’s VIPower technology integrates all of these functions onto the same device and provides numerous advantages over discrete device solutions.
The idea may be simple but the implementation is tough. It requires mastering multiple technologies and combining them on one wafer. ST has more than 25 years experience since creating our VIPower technology and ST is now in its seventh generation. But hold on, we haven’t explained what the term VIPower means yet. VIPower stands for Vertical Intelligent Power and comes from being able to integrate Vertical Power Transistors on the same substrate as traditional logic and sensors, which add the Intelligence. In fact, as the diagram below shows, it’s pretty complex.
In the latest version of ST’s VIPower technology, 40V vertical or TrenchFET power devices are combined with 40V DMOS power devices, each with their driver circuitry, with 10V and 3V CMOS technology available for the logic and sensors. This smart combination of technologies enables high integration in a single package, that depending upon the product configuration, can provide higher energy efficiency, high actuation currents, serial and parallel interfaces, loads up to 50A DC load for 12V, 24V and 48V, and enhanced diagnostics.
In VIPower technology, ST currently has more than 450 products in 30 different packages that serve over 1000 customers. We have already sold over 8 billion devices designed with the technology. So with 8 Billion sold, what are the applications?
There are many applications and many of them are for the automotive sector. VIPower products are particularly adept at adding convenience to the car, with precisely controlled DC power being used today for door locks, steering, windows, mirrors, washer pumps, sunroofs and convertible-car folding roofs. The products are also extensively used for all vehicle lighting: Front, Rear, and Interior. These relatively common applications are now being enhanced by the trend for vehicle electrification, with 48V distribution, higher power loads, and networked power management all benefiting from dedicated VIPower products. VIPower also extends to relay and fuse replacement. Outside the automotive scope, VIPower is used in switched mode power supplies and in battery chargers for domestic appliances.
Discover more in the animation or check out the VIPower Finder