Power Electronics / Power Management


Automated web-based DC-DC converter design system

28 February 2001 Power Electronics / Power Management

VDAC (Vicor Design Assistance Computer) is a innovative new system which enables Vicor's customers to specify on-line, and verify in realtime, the performance and attributes of 'custom' 2nd Generation DC-DC converters. The patented expert system accepts user-defined converter specifications and, in conjunction with the full database of components available to Vicor's automated manufacturing lines, generates an optimal design. This design is downloaded directly into Vicor's computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM) system. By offering a direct link into the mass customisation capabilities of Vicor's 2nd Generation automated design and manufacturing environment, VDAC frees power specifiers from having to compromise between standard products, which only partially meet their needs and custom engineered products, with their long cycle times and performance uncertainties.

VDAC is available to the user over the Internet any time, day or night. Based on user-entered design parameters - such as input voltage range, output voltage set point, output power and operating temperature - and mechanical variations - including package size, baseplate style and pin/interconnect option - VDAC will generate all valid, manufacturable designs which meet the specifications. VDAC then selects the optimum design and creates the bill of material, test parameters, test limits and work instructions needed by Vicor's CIM system to direct the production of the product on Vicor's fully automated manufacturing lines. VDAC returns a unique part number and the unit price and delivery schedule to the user.

Prior to making it available to every user, access to this powerful system is being provided to an initial group of customers representing diverse market and product requirements. "We will continue to roll out VDAC to more and more users as we verify that it is 100% capable of supporting our customer's expectations", said Andrew Hilbert, Senior Director, Product Marketing. "This expert system will ultimately make mass customisation of high performance power components an essential resource for every power architect."

Initially, VDAC will support Vicor's 2nd Generation DC-DC converters with any output voltage between 2 and 48 V d.c. and with any input voltage from 18 to 425 V d.c. within an input voltage range of up to 2,1:1. All of the Vicor established brick standards, full- half- and quarter-size, are available. Output power is selectable over a continuous range of 20 to 500 W per module and modules can be configured in fault-tolerant arrays capable of delivering several kilowatts.





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