Step-down regulator steps up to the challenge

The LTC3612 is a high efficiency, 4MHz synchronous buck regulator from Linear Technology with a constant frequency, current mode architecture. Its user programmable switching frequency enables the use of tiny, low cost capacitors and inductors. It can deliver up to 3A of continuous output current at output voltages as low as 0.6V from a 3mm x 4mm QFN or a thermally enhanced TSSOP-20 package. The LTC3612 operates from an input voltage of 2.25V to 5.5V, making it ideal for single cell Li-Ion applications as well as 3.3V or 5V intermediate bus systems.

The LTC3612 uses internal switches with RDS(ON) of only 45mOhms and 70mOhms to deliver efficiencies of over 90% for high step-down ratio applications, such as 5VIN to 1.8VOUT conversions. Burst Mode operation is used to maximize light load efficiency, requiring only 70A at no load, making it well suited for applications demanding maximum battery run time. An adjustable Burst Mode clamp enables designers to further optimize light load efficiency.

For applications that require the lowest possible noise, the LTC3612 can be configured to run in either pulse-skipping or forced continuous modes, reducing noise and potential RF interference. The LTC3612 also offers inputs for tracking capability as well as a DDR memory mode which can source/sink 1.5A. Additional features include optional active voltage positioning, a Power Good voltage monitor, external synchronization capability and thermal protection.

The LTC3612EUDC is available in a 3mm x 4mm QFN-20, and the LTC3612EFE is offered in a 20-lead, thermally enhanced TSSOP package. Pricing starts at $3.10 and $3.25 each, respectively in 1,000-piece quantities. Industrial grade versions, the LTC3612IUDC and LTC3612IFE, are guaranteed to meet specifications over the -40C to 125C operating junction temperature range and are priced at $3.65 and $3.82 each, respectively in 1,000-piece quantities. All versions are available from stock.