Other news of interest

PSMA Announces New Officers and Board of Directors
Posted: 2018-4-26
Twelve-member board brings together industry leadership and expertise covering the dynamic technological advances impacting the power sources industry

The Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) is pleased to announce that a new slate of officers has been elected to lead its board of directors for the 2018-2020 term. The new officers are: Chairman Stephen Oliver (Navitas Semiconductor), President Mike Hayes (Tyndall National Institute), Vice President Fred Weber (Future Technology Worldwide) and Secretary/Treasurer Michel Grenon (Gaia Converter Inc.).

“PSMA continues to drive the promotion of the tremendous technical advances being made in power conversion systems, products and component technologies,” said Stephen Oliver, PSMA’s new chairman. “The Association’s critical work in producing its Technology Roadmap—plus the influential work from the PSMA committees on Packaging, Energy Management, Energy Harvesting, and many others—relies on the active participation of our members. We welcome and encourage all companies in our industry to become part of the organization.”

The twelve members of the board are elected by the member company representatives to serve three-year terms, with four members rotating off each year. In addition to the new officers, the following members complete the PSMA’s strong board of directors for 2018-2019:

  • Alain Chapius, Bel Power Solutions
  • Dhaval Dalal, ON Semiconductor
  • Alexander Gerfer, Würth Elektronik
  • Tim McDonald, Infineon Technologies
  • Brian Narveson, Narveson Innovative Consulting
  • Kevin Parmenter, Excelsys Technologies, Ltd., an Advanced Energy Company
  • Conor Quinn, Artesyn Embedded Technologies
  • Brian Zahnstecher, PowerRox
2018 IEEE Symposium on Product Safety Engineering
Posted: 2018-2-20

The IEEE Product Safety Engineering Society hosts a premier symposium annually on all relevant topics for workers and innovators in the product safety area. Join us in San Jose for ISPCE 2018 for three days of technical sessions and exhibits!

The IEEE Product Safety Engineering Society seeks original and unpublished formal papers, presentations (without formal papers), workshops, and tutorials on all aspects of product safety and compliance engineering including, but not limited to:

  • Global Market Access & Regulations, Compliance Management
  • Global Hazardous Locations
  • EMC & Wireless Compliance
  • Environmental & Energy Regulations
  • Batteries & Energy Storage Systems
  • Medical Devices
  • Compliance 101
  • Hazard Based Safety
  • Engineering & Safety Science
  • Forensics, Failure & Risk Analysis, Assessment & Management
  • Legal, Regulations, Directives & Consumer Protection
  • Emerging Technologies & Innovations

Register now. Advanced Registration Rates end April 1.

Visit psessymposium.org for more information.

Powering Marine Applications - The Many Challenges!
Posted: 2018-2-19

We are all aware of self-driving cars and many other exciting projects that the automotive industry is engaged in, but far fewer of us have heard about unmanned ships and associated projects that will operate large fleets of vessels that are capable of navigating from port to port without operational crews. Although in its early stages, projects such as the Maritime Unmanned Navigation Through Intelligence In Networks (MUNIN) project have investigated the feasibility of such projects and also test-bed development for future developments. The use of unmanned ships will require extreme reliability from the main generator through to the single point-of-load, and the challenges and demands placed on power designers will be far beyond anything experienced to date.

State of the art in marine power

Rolls-Royce unmanned ship project (source: Rolls-Royce)

Future generations of power supplies for unmanned ship are still under definition although it is important to understand the specificity of the marine segment that is quite unique in terms of its environmental needs and regulations. Due to the nature of the business, the requirements imposed on products and systems deployed in shipping and offshore installations are greater than what are currently required for land industrial and office environments. In addition, international regulations and standards applying to the marine industry are very complex, requiring an in-depth knowledge of the application and where it will be operated. Power designers must be knowledgeable about marine specific voltage distribution, combining DC and AC networks, safety regulations, and many other aspects such as 'operational zones' that can vary wildly from ship to ship and with the nature of the merchandize being transported.

The zones

Generally, two zones are distinguished on a ship; the 'bridge and the open deck zone', and the 'general power zone', which basically refers to all other spaces on the ship.

One example of a specific requirement per zone is the electromagnetic emission and immunity (EMC). The areas open deck and bridge place extra demands on the EMC, as a lot of sensitive equipment is housed in those areas such as communication, radar and navigation devices. These EMC requirements are well below the known EN55022 Level B and measurements begin at 10kHz instead of the usual 150kHz.

The limits regarding mechanical and climatic requirements are also higher than for the average industrial application. Vibration levels up to 4g are common, as well as large temperature fluctuations from -25 to + 70 degrees C, and high relative humidity conditions where condensation cannot be excluded.

The rules

Every country with a maritime sector has its own certification authority with specific demands for local certification, forcing power designers to keep track of the final application where the power supplies will be installed. In general, there is a common group of standards and qualification processes that have similar roots for all countries' certification, though from country to country and maritime sub segments there are also a number of very specific requirements that increase complexity. The difficulty is, there is no de-facto percentage of 'common standards' versus specific, thus requiring power designers to start any new project by reviewing a large number of documents prior to designing anything – a lot of time consuming, but very necessary, hard work.

In order to develop a sustainable way-of-working to ensure that the power solutions can be utilized all over the world, marine power supplies designers used to combine the requirements from all countries active in marine construction and operation to establish a cross reference table with equivalence and specific action in the case of major deviations - for example, higher demands on shock and vibration. Once such an equivalence table is established, the toughest requirements of each category is selected and used as a reference for designing, verifying and qualifying the final power supply. This is done in close cooperation with the final customer, reducing the risk of under-specifying the power supply and missing final qualification.

Combining this design methodology with an in-depth knowledge of local standards and regulations results in a test protocol that meets international and local requirements. This test protocol is then applied to all products, simplifying not only the final approval, but also confirming that the power supply can be used for replacement or system-upgrade purposes in any country.

Usually marine customers expect the power supplies to comply with and be certified and stamped with the type approval logo of Germanischer Lloyd (GL) because of the extensive testing to meet EN60945 for extended approvals by Bureau Veritas (BV), Lloyds Register (LRS), America Bureau of Shipping (ABS), Det Norske Veritas (DNV), Korean Register of Shipping (KR) and many other notified bodies in the maritime world.

More power in a smaller footprint

With the increased amount of embedded electronics, the marine industry requires more functionality in a smaller space. Nowadays, ship owners want to equip their vessels with broadband internet connections for both passengers and crew while embracing - as much as is possible - the same features as when ashore.

As a further example, position tracking systems are built-in to the monitor, requiring very compact power supplies operating in a confined environment without a fan. Such power supplies must be designed for conduction cooling, with high attention paid to the placement of dissipative components and optimized conduction cooling.

Marine grade power supply design optimized for conduction cooling in confined environments (Source: Powerbox)

For most power distribution systems, power units are preferably in cassette format, hence simpler to install, maintain and upgrade. The marine cassettes are usually mounted on DIN rail, although electrical designers within the ship industry require that the power supply is also compliant with standalone conduction cooling installations anywhere on the ship, meaning - as for the embedded power supplies - that the design has to be highly optimized for conduction cooling.

Packaging more power in a smaller box with optimized conduction cooling requires a high degree of integration of the power circuits. The efficiency needs to be as high as possible because a small housing also means that the cooling surface is smaller. By using the most recently developed resonant circuits and switching control methods, efficiency levels up to 95% are achieved although power designers are exploring new technologies such as digital control and the latest generation of Gallium Nitride (GaN) power FETs, targeting higher efficiency and a flatter curve, maintaining high efficiency from very low through to high loads. All new technologies are explored, although the nature of the business - ships are often in the middle of oceans and weeks from land – means that extremely high reliability levels apply, and so new technologies must be verified for use in extreme conditions. This is an ongoing process that is mandatory for future unmanned ships where maintenance during operation is almost impossible. Reliability and zero downtime are the rule. Accordingly, power supplies should be able to be connected in parallel for redundancy operation. It is common practice to add an external ORing block (usually with similar dimensions to the power supply) that electricians interconnect to the power supplies. This conventional way will tend to disappear and electronics paralleling circuitry built-in to the power supply itself will take over. Adding that function into the power unit saves space for more vital equipment but requires power designers to integrate more into a smaller package.

What's next in marine?

Rolls-Royce oX land-based control center (Source: Rolls-Royce)

Existing power solutions for the marine industry have proven their robustness and meet international compliances. Power designers are exploring new technologies to permanently improve efficiency, and to decrease power consumption and dissipation. Unmanned ships will require a level of reliability that will be close to a mythical 'zero faults' level, and the ability for power supplies to be controlled and monitored from a central office (Figure 04) that could be on the other side of the planet! For the power designer it will be an incredible challenge to combine state of the art technologies in switching, thermal management, control and intelligence. We are close to a new era where power supplies will become self-controlled and able to diagnose early signs of failure to apply corrective action. Is that a dream or reality? In my opinion it's knocking at the door and we will soon be there!

Provided by Patrick Le Fèvre 
Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Powerbox




Meet Your Directors
Posted: 2018-2-2


Four members of the Board of Directors are elected at the PSMA Annual Meeting held every year during the APEC conference. Each Director serves a three year term and is eligible to be reelected for one additional term.

In this issue we would like to acknowledge Ed Herbert and Donald Woodard who were first elected in 2012, and will be finishing their terms at the Annual Meeting at APEC 2018. We thank them both for their six years of service to PSMA and the industry.


Ed Herbert received his BEEE from Yale University in 1963. He worked as a design engineer, a project engineer, an engineering supervisor, then as engineering manager until 1985. Since then he has been independent, promoting patented technology for license.

Ed serves is Co-Chair of the PSMA Magnetics Committee. He is an active participant in the Power Electronics Packaging Committee and Power Technology Roadmap Committee and an occasional participant in several other committees.

He helped with the design of the Energy Efficiency Database. He sponsored all three phases of Core Loss Studies and wrote Supplemental Reports further analyzing the data. He has chaired and presented at several APEC Industry Sessions. He helped organize the High Frequency Magnetics workshops in 2016 and 2017, and is helping with the workshop planned for March 2018. He recently sponsored two special projects to study flux propagation in ferrites; both are on-going.

Ed has been enriched by his association with PSMA and welcomes the opportunity to give more in return.

Provided by Ed Herbert, Independent Inventor

Donald Woodard is president of Venable Instruments, a leader in the research, development and manufacture of frequency response analyzers for testing, measurement and power supply design. The Company was founded in 1979 by H. Dean Venable, the pioneer of stability analysis, and Woodard became President in 1999. Woodard was elected to Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) Board of Directors in 2012, supported by his vast experience serving on the Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC) committee since 2002. His eight-year tenure as APEC's Exhibits Chairman saw exceptional growth in both vendor participation and exhibit attendance. Woodard is known throughout the power electronics world for his proven leadership and active commitment to advancing the standards, collective direction and corporate responsibility within the industry.

Prior to extending his leadership acumen to Venable Instruments, PSMA and APEC, Woodard spent 25 years working in the private sector in executive management, sales and marketing roles at FMC Corporation.

Woodard graduated from the former North Texas State University (now The University of North Texas) in 1976 with a B.B.A. in Sales & Marketing. A native of East Texas, he and his wife of 31 years, Melony, have called Austin home since 1995. They are parents of two children, with two grandchildren rounding out their growing family. The Woodards are active members of Austin Ridge Bible Church and serve on several non-profit committees and outreach programs, such as Mobile Loaves and Fishes. In his spare time, he enjoys fly fishing, bird hunting, competitive shooting and all things rock and roll.

Provided by Donald Woodard, President, Venable Instruments


Will the Power Supply Industry Adopt the Cradle-to-Cradle Business Model?
Posted: 2017-12-31

Due to its very nature, the power supply industry has been on a never-ending quest searching for new technologies to improve energy efficiency, safety and miniaturization.  In doing so, an admirable pioneering spirit has developed and grown within the power community. Moving from the plated germanium rectifiers of the old days to the latest gallium nitride or silicon carbide technology, time and time again power designers have proven their ability to optimize efficient energy conversion while complying with ever more demanding regulations. Step by step - sometimes small ones, sometimes big – the industry has created power architectures that reduce energy consumption and in many cases has discovered technical solutions to supposedly 'unsolvable' problems.  Who twenty years ago would have believed that we could produce power supplies with such high levels of efficiency that also comply with very stringent environmental regulations? All those achievements are great but are they enough to address the growing demand from the market to reduce - even further - the environmental impact?

Risks under control

Technology has helped us to perform 'magic' but at the same time the world has changed and environmental challenges have become more complex and global, requiring all industries to reconsider their ways of working, particularly with a higher regard and responsibility for environmental and social issues.

This is the latest challenge that the power industry is now facing, and despite the fact that the technologies brought to the market have helped reduce CO2 emissions, companies' Corporate and Social Responsibility (CSR) policies aligned to international standards will require many adjustments in the way they are working. Not only that, but the issue of how their suppliers will comply with such environmental regulations and manage the related risks.

One example is the implementation of the global risk management ISO 31000 methodology.  This was initially developed for decision and policy makers within governments and large corporations in order to minimize exposure to risk and to secure business integrity for stockholders, and is now adopted by many companies such as those in the medical industry.
ISO 31000 is becoming an important tool, helping companies to develop their environmental strategy and gain better control of risk, both internal and external. ISO 31000 is defined as 'a process that provides confidence that planned objectives will be achieved within an acceptable degree of residual risk'.  Moving forwards, ISO 31000 will become an immense and increasingly important part of organizations.

Clearly, many power supply designers are used to dealing with risk management assessment (e.g. when designing a medical power supply to comply with the IEC 60601-1-3 Edition, or a power supply for demanding applications in other segments such as in gas and oil industry), though in coming years the demand from OEM customers on the power supply industry in term of risk management might become more global, including environmental impact and social responsibility down to a single supplier. That requires our industry to be prepared for new ways of working and even to consider revamping some of the business principles that we thought were engraved in stone!

Are we ready for that?

Medical drives trends!

Addressing a vast range of applications, from consumer to defense, the power supply industry has to comply with many standards and regulations.  Some of these, originally developed for a specific segment are now rapidly being adopted by other industries. Regulation in the medical industry is a good example where a number of parameters specified in the IEC 60601-1-3 and -4 have now been adopted by industrial project managers involved in 'Industry 4.0' (e.g. higher isolation, lower leakage current, reduced and in-control EMI and documented risk assessment).
Designing power supplies and complying with safety regulations is for sure a vital obligation, but designing a product for the environment (DfE) is just as important. Here again, the medical industry is setting the scene and according to a market study released in 2014 by Johnson & Johnson, more than 80 percent of the hospitals around the world are expected to incorporate sustainability into their purchasing decisions and for many to follow ISO 31000's risk assessment process - including their suppliers.

That considered, one way or another the power supply industry will have to comply with environmental requirements demanded by the medical industry, and by other industries formulating the same demands on their suppliers and partners.  Therefore it becomes very important for the power supply industry to adopt a way of working that includes environmental aspects at the very early stages of any project.

Designing for the environment has often been performed on a voluntary basis or used as a marketing/sales argument, though that is now changing. For many, a product with high efficiency and low standby power may seem to be DfE by nature, but that is not necessarily the case. DfE is much more than that and despite the existence of ISO 14062, the lack of a common definition or standard that is relevant to the electronics industry is making it difficult for customers and users to verify what is included under each company DfE definition and verification.

Being aware of the difficulties in assessing the different variables considered as part of DfE from their suppliers, the medical industry and regulatory bodies realized the need to define a standardized methodology that considers the overall life cycle, i.e. all stages, from the initial specification to end-of-life management.

Following several years preparation, in 2007 as collateral to the IEC 60601 the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) published the so-called 'dash one nine'; IEC 60601-1-9. The objective of IEC 60601-1-9 is to reduce the environmental impact of the entire range of medical electrical equipment (ME equipment), taking into account all stages of the product life cycle, namely product specification, design, manufacturing, sales, logistics, installation, commissioning, deployment, and end of life management. The fundamental principle of the IEC 60601-1-9 is to protect the environment and human health from hazardous substances, to preserve raw materials and energy, minimize the generation of waste, and minimize the adverse environmental impact associated with waste.

Without going into microscopic detail, the core requirements of IEC 60601-1-9 can be summarized as 'identification', 'instruction', and 'end-of-life management'. During this process, manufacturers will have to perform in accordance with existing processes (e.g. risk management performed in compliance with ISO 1497, life-cycle thinking, in line with ISO 14001 with particular emphasis on ISO 14062) and develop documentation demonstrating that all steps have been carried out with the highest consideration for the environment.

Since IEC 60601-1-9 was amended in 2013, the standard has been used to guide and help companies minimize products' and operational environmental impact and has been implemented on a voluntary basis.  However in 2014 the Brazil National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) took the lead, requiring that any medical electrical equipment sold into the country meets the standard by December 1, 2016 with special attention to three clauses: (4.1) Identification of Environmental Aspects, (4.5.2) Instructions for Minimizing Environmental Impact During Normal Use, and (4.5.3) Information for End of Life Management.
So Brazil is the first country to stipulate that medical electrical equipment formally complies with the standard, but other countries are also considering its implementation or national directives aimed at motivating medical equipment manufacturers to include parts of the standard to minimize impacts, and contribute to the development of a sustainable economy that preserves the environment.

Could the power industry adopt the cradle-to-cradle business model?

As engineers we enjoy challenges, solving problems, and to some extent we are used to breaking 'unbreakable' limits. The power supply history is awash with examples of 'that which will never be possible' eventually becoming a 'great innovation'. In terms of contributing to the environment, by permanently improving technical performance and reducing energy consumption, we have proven our ability to contribute to the reduction of environmental impact, but we can do more. Integrating the full life cycle stages and complying with standards such as ISO 60601-1-9 (or equivalent) are good, but looking forward can we rethink the way the power supply industry is working? Can we contribute even more to build a sustainable environment for future generations?

As part of an internal project, a group of engineers from different disciplines and companies were invited to project the complete life cycle of Powerbox's OFM225 power supply (Figure 1). The power supply had originally been designed for high efficiency and ease of manufacturing, and the group was asked to explore how, outside the established business model, could such a product/process not only have the lowest possible environmental impact, but also be able to optimize the positive impact (e.g. Supporting local economy).

Taking into consideration all aspects from initial design to end-of-life (and potential second life), the project followed the cradle-to-cradle (C2C) approach and identified areas to work on in order to minimize negative impacts and optimize positive ones (Figure 2).

For many it may seem an odd approach for a power supply company to consider revamping a conventional way of working to adopt such a model, but considering that C2C takes the whole lifecycle of an item into account, including sourcing and end-of-life disposal, it becomes synchronous with existing and forthcoming regulations, with customers, end-users and stakeholders expectations, and a way forward for the power supply industry to help create a better world.

Integrating the C2C five goals (Figure 3) at the beginning of a project will contribute to the development of power supplies with the lowest environmental impact while increasing the positive ones (e.g. selecting a components supplier engaged in sustainable development, working with CEM partners to reduce water consumption and to use renewable energies, designing products with end-of-life or second life in mind), contributing to make the power supply industry, not only able to provide products with best in class technology, but to contribute to local economies and the development of a new way of working, paving the way for future generations.

Recent climate and ecological events remind us daily of how fragile our environment is, and we all have to contribute to its protection. The cradle-to-cradle business model within the power industry may not be a utopia, but it will eventually become part of our daily way of working. So to the question: "Will the power supply industry adopt the cradle-to-cradle business model?" The answer is a resounding, "Yes!"

Provided by Patrick Le Fèvre 
Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Powerbox




International Future Energy Challenge - A New Challenge
Posted: 2017-12-31

The Future Energy Challenge started in 2001 as a bi-annual competition in North America. Prof. Jason Lai from Virginia Tech organized this first competition. In 2003, the competition became an international event and was officially named the International Future Energy Challenge (IFEC). From 2003 to 2015, a total of 152 university teams had participated in IFEC. With more teams participating in the competition, the steering committee of IFEC decided to change the competition from a bi-annual event to an annual event starting in 2016.

In 2017, the competition was hosted by Prof. Qiang Li from the Center for Power Electronics Systems (CPES) at Virginia Tech. Sponsors of the 2017 IFEC include IEEE Power Electronics Society (PELS), IEEE Industry Applications Society (IAS), IEEE Power and Energy Society (PES) and Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA). Combining 2016 and 2017, the number of IFEC participants are almost doubled from the past bi-annual competitions.

In 2017, the competition topic was high-Efficiency high-density isolated dc/dc converter. The converter needed to work with a dc input (360~400 V dc) and output a constant 12 V dc voltage with a peak power of 750 W. The targeted power density was 15 W/cm3 or higher with a peak efficiency requirement of 97% at 50% of the rated load. At the final onsite competition, the converter went through all functional tests, and a 55 oC high operation temperature test. Competition  teams  were  encouraged  to  adopt  WBG  power devices  in  innovative  circuit  topologies  to achieve high efficiency and high density at the same time.  Twenty-three teams from five continents joined the competition. The grand prize went to Kunming University of Science and Technology. You can see the full list of winners at energychallenge.weebly.com/ifec-2017.html.

The IFEC2018 call for proposals is already out. This time, the topic is high-efficiency high-density isolated bidirectional dc/dc converter for residential energy storage systems. The final competition will be hosted at the Tsinghua University in Beijing. Visit energychallenge.weebly.com/ifec-2018.html for more information. The IFEC2019 will be hosted at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.  The topic will be electric bicycle with an emphasis on motor control.  IFEC, a new challenge awaits!

Provided by
IFEC 2017 Organizing Committee Members:
Qiang Li, Virginia Tech
Jin Wang, Ohio State University
Yaow-ming Chen, National Taiwan University


WIPDA 2017 Overview
Posted: 2017-12-31

The 5th IEEE Workshop on Wide Bandgap Power Devices and Applications (WiPDA, www.wipda.org), sponsored by IEEE and PSMA, was successfully held from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, 2017, at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort near Albuquerque, NM.

WIPDA is a fast-growing annual event which provides a forum for device scientists, circuit designers, and application engineers to share technology updates, research findings, development experience, and application knowledge. 
As in past years, WiPDA covered a wide range of topics related to wide-bandgap power electronics, including but not limited to:

  1. Heteroepitaxial and bulk materials growth
  2. Gate dielectrics and surface passivation
  3. Device structures and fabrication techniques
  4. Device characterization and modeling
  5. Very high efficiency and compact converters
  6. SOAs including short-circuit, spike, and transient tolerance
  7. Harsh environment (e.g. high temperature) operation and reliability
  8. Packaging, power modules, and ICs
  9. Hard-switched and soft-switched applications
  10. Common-mode and EMI management
  11. Gate drive and other auxiliary circuits
  12. High-performance passive components
  13. Applications in renewable energy and storage, transportation, industrial drives, and grid power systems

The number of WIPDA attendees has grown quickly over the last five years, with attendees coming from multiple disciplines including materials science, device fabrication, power circuits, and system applications. Over 200 attendees participated in the workshop this year, including representatives from industry, academia, government, and research institutions. Attendees came from the United States as well as numerous other countries. Nine industrial and institutional partners provided support to the conference.

WiPDA 2017 maintained the arrangement from previous years and included tutorials, keynote talks, panel discussions, oral technical sessions, a poster session and banquet, standards meetings, and an exhibition.


There were seven tutorials covering both device and application topics, from fundamental knowledge to the frontier research trends. The tutorial speakers were from both academic institutions (Purdue University, North Carolina State University, Virginia Tech, and University of Alabama) and industry (John Deere, Texas Instruments, and Infineon Technologies). The WIPDA 2017 keynote sessions featured eight distinguished speakers from ARPA-E, Navitas Semiconductor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, PowerAmerica, Ford, Infineon, and Texas Instruments, who shared their experiences and visions on SiC and GaN development and applications from different angles as the device manufacturer, the equipment designer, the researcher, and the system integrator. Additionally, two panel sessions focused on high-voltage SiC and high-frequency GaN, and included leading experts from US federal agencies, industry, and academia. The technical program consisted of 50 oral presentations and 21 posters, representing 10 countries. Each presentation or poster will be available on IEEE Xplore.

This year's poster session and banquet were held at the Cottonwoods Pavilion, located on the Tamaya grounds along the banks of the Rio Grande River. Further, IEEE's International Technology Roadmap for Wide Bandgap Semiconductors (ITRW) working group met at the workshop. Finally, an exhibition consisting of ten different companies and agencies paticipanted in WIPDA2017.

As in past years, WiPDA again provided student travel grants to encourage student participation in the conference and promote education in the area of wide-bandgap power electronics. 16 students received these awards, out of a total of 60 student participants, supported equally by PELS and PSMA.

WiPDA 2018 will be hosted by Georgia Tech in Atlanta, and is tentatively scheduled for November 5-7, 2018. Please check www.wipda.org for information and updates. We look forward to your participation at next year's exciting event!

Provided by Dr. Fang Luo,
Publicity Chair WiPDA 2017




Lincoln International's Solar Energy Stock Index: Q4 2017
Posted: 2017-12-1

Lincoln International is pleased to present you with the latest Solar Energy Stock Index from our Global Energy, Power & Infrastructure Group. This will provide you with:

  • Quarterly performance of the Solar Energy Stock Index versus the S&P Index
  • Relative market valuations of each Solar Energy sector
  • Current financial data for each company in the index
(842k pdf)

This data is included with the permission of Lincoln International. For more information, you may contact John McManus (jmcman@optonline.net) or the Association Office.


Lincoln International's Solar Energy DealReader: Q4 2017
Posted: 2017-12-1

Lincoln International is pleased to present you with the latest Solar Energy DealReader from our Global Energy & Power Group. This will provide you with:

  • 2017 Deal Volume Comparison
  • Recent Solar Energy Transaction Announcements
  • Q4 2017 Solar Energy Transaction Summary
(807k pdf)

This data is included with the permission of Lincoln International. For more information, you may contact John McManus (jmcman@optonline.net) or the Association Office.



Lincoln International's EMS Stock Index: Q4 2017
Posted: 2017-12-1

Lincoln International is pleased to present you with the latest EMS Stock Index from our Global Electronics Sector. This will provide you with:

  • Quarterly performance of the EMS Stock Index versus the S&P Index
  • Relative market valuations of each EMS sector
  • Current financial data for each company in the index
(2.1M pdf)

This data is included with the permission of Lincoln International. For more information, you may contact John McManus (jmcman@optonline.net) or the Association Office.


Lincoln International's EMS DealReader: Q4 2017
Posted: 2017-12-1


Lincoln International is pleased to present you with the latest EMS DealReader from our Global Electronics Industry Group. This will provide you with:

  • 2017 deal volume comparison by total transactions, deal type, geography and size
  • Recent EMS transaction announcements
  • 2017 EMS transaction summary
(2.5MB pdf)

This data is included with the permission of Lincoln International. For more information, you may contact John McManus (jmcman@optonline.net) or the Association Office.


Welcome to the PSMA Reliability Committee Survey!
Posted: 2017-11-14

This should only take 6-8 min to complete and we thank you in advance for your input. The survey is at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PSMA-Reliab-Comm-Survey. It is now open and will be closed by Fri, 12/8/17. NOW EXTENDED TO FRIDAY, 1/5/18! 

Do you have concerns with power supply reliability as a user, manufacturer, or OEM?  Have you ever wished there would be more industry-wide efforts to address the various issues of design, manufacturing, field use, etc.?  Well now is your chance to drive a direct impact to these kinds of initiatives so please help us help you.  Fill-out the survey and pass the link along to as many colleagues, customers, and competitors as appropriate since the more responses received, the more meaningful the Committee initiatives will be.

Historically, power supplies were frequently at the top of the list of causes of field failures of electronic systems. Component and design improvements reduced failures but that positive trend may be reversing. PSMA has formed a committee to assess this situation and identify ways to put power supply reliability back on a track of continuous improvement. Success will mean higher customer satisfaction and loyalty along with lower support costs for power supply manufacturers. The starting point for the Reliability Committee is to gather data on power supply reliability and the causes of failures, both in the factory and in the field. A simple survey will help set the priorities of the committee and establish the most appropriate next steps.

About the PSMA Reliability Committee

In alignment with the PSMA mission of bringing value and utility to members as well as the power electronics industry as a whole, the PSMA Reliability Committee aims to spearhead industry initiatives that identify and attempt to solve the pertinent industry challenges related to the reliability and performance of power supplies and associated products.  The scope of the Committee shall include anything that impacts the life and desired application of a power supply, including (but not limited to) interaction with a system and/or other power supplies.

This committee was newly formed in July 2017 and is looking for eager participants. Please contact one of the Co-Chairs or the Association Office if you'd like more information or to join.

PSMA Reliability Committee Co-Chairs
Tony O'Brien, Cisco Systems, Inc.
Brian Zahnstecher, PowerRox, LLC

Reduce Risk and Time to Market with Microchip’s MPLAB® Mindi™ Analog Simulator with SPICE and SIMPLIS Environments
Posted: 2017-10-10
MPLAB Mindi Software Updated to Include Over 300 Device Models and Schematics

MPLAB® Mindi™ analog simulation software, which was updated to include more models and features, is now available from Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: MCHP). The MPLAB Mindi Analog Simulator is a circuit simulation tool that now supports more than 300 Microchip analog products, with SIMetrix’s enhanced SPICE (Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis) and SIMPLIS Technologies’ SIMPLIS (SIMulation of Piecewise LInear Systems) simulation environments. The updated Mindi analog simulation software is available as a free download by visiting: http://www.microchip.com/mindi.

Analog simulation is often a crucial step for circuit design, where complicated device interactions can be difficult to refine and debug in hardware. The proper simulation tools can help designers avoid significant risk—decreasing time to market and saving costly hardware revisions. The MPLAB Mindi Analog Simulator can test a circuit or sub-circuit, including transient and stability analyses, providing valuable estimation for the target circuit operation. Many applications require simulation before production. In the past, larger companies were often reliant on third-party providers or internal development for their analog component models, while many smaller companies wanted to run simulations but were not able to afford tool licenses for a full software package. The features and affordability of the MPLAB Mindi Analog Simulator make it an excellent option for customers of all sizes.

The MPLAB Mindi Analog Simulator allows for fast simulation of a wide variety of circuits, including closed-loop control systems like filters, power supplies and motor drive applications. Powered by SIMetrix/SIMPLIS simulation engines, and pre-loaded with Microchip’s analog device models, this analog simulation package allows for more accurate and faster simulation.

The updated software package now includes support for additional Digitally Enhanced Power Analog (DEPA) controllers, linear regulators, MOSFET drivers and LED drivers not present in previous software releases. In addition, it is based on the SIMetrix/SIMPLIS 8.1 software package, with added support for file-defined piecewise linear sources, Laplace transform transfer functions, arbitrary filters, Fourier analysis plots, transmission line modeling and improved convergence in the SIMetrix environment. The update also added convergence reporting to help with debug issues in the SIMetrix environment.

“Customers want a full solution, including software tools,” said Keith Pazul, director of marketing for Microchip’s Analog, Power and Interface Division. “The MPLAB Mindi Analog Simulator complements the compiler and integrated development environment Microchip is famous for, adding analog simulation capabilities. Now people can get the same industry-leading level of software support for analog and digital designs with Microchip’s full suite of design tools.”


iNEMI Names New Roadmap Manager
Posted: 2017-9-9
Linda Wilson has extensive experience in technology roadmapping and international collaboration

The International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (iNEMI) announced that Linda Steele Wilson has been named Roadmap Manager for the consortium. She replaces Chuck Richardson, who has headed iNEMI’s roadmapping efforts since 2006. Chuck will continue working with iNEMI as a roadmap consultant.
“With her impressive experience in technology roadmaps, as well consortium-based activities, Linda is a very strong addition to our team,” said Bill Bader, iNEMI CEO. “The roadmap is a critical and unique deliverable for iNEMI, both in terms of setting direction for our own activities and for supporting the electronics manufacturing supply chain. We welcome Linda’s leadership in this area as we begin ramping up for our next roadmap cycle.

“We want to thank Chuck for the way he has helped the roadmap grow and evolve over the past 11 years. The 2017 Roadmap was our largest deliverable ever. He has done an absolutely marvelous job of leading the iNEMI roadmap and of wrapping up the 2017 Technical Plan and Research Priorities, which are part of our roadmapping process.”

Wilson served as program manager and managing editor of the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) for more than 20 years. She was a critical part of the committee to transform the national roadmap effort into the first international industry roadmap.

In addition to her work with the ITRS, Wilson successfully led an initiative to produce the CIGS (copper indium gallium di-selenide) Photovoltaic Roadmap, working with the Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium (PVMC) and industry leaders. She most recently served as the program manager and team facilitator for a new roadmap initiative with BioPhorum Operations Group, a bio-pharmaceutical consortium, and serves as roadmap consultant for the IEEE roadmap initiatives for the International Roadmap for Devices and Systems (IRDS), and the 5G and Beyond roadmap efforts.

“I am delighted to be on the team of this historically important roadmap,” said Wilson. “The highly regarded iNEMI roadmap continually guides the development of a strong industry ecosystem from research to end-user applications. My role is clear in continuing the evolution of this roadmap and it is terrific to be part of the effort.  My thanks especially to Chuck both as a roadmap colleague through the years and as instrumental in developing this successful process I hope to serve.”

Richardson joined the iNEMI staff in 2001. He began working on the roadmap as staff manager, starting with the 2002 Roadmap, and took over the reins completely in 2006. During that time, the roadmap grew significantly in size and scope, and became an international effort providing a truly global perspective. The 2002 Roadmap featured 23 chapters and approximately 1,000 pages, while the most recent edition (2017) had 28 chapters, more than 2,300 pages, and included new chapters on topics such as Internet of Things, flexible hybrid electronics, and ceramic substrates and photovoltaic technology. Participation in the roadmap also grew. In 2002, there were 365 participants from 165 organization, most of which were domestic. More than 500 individuals from at least 22 countries, and representing more than 350 organizations helped create the 2017 Roadmap.

For additional information about iNEMI, visit www.inemi.org.

Announcing the Formation of the PSMA Reliability Committee
Posted: 2017-9-4

T he Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) is proud to announce the formation of a new Technology Committee - the Reliability Committee. The PSMA Reliability Committee was formed to identify key industry initiatives related to the reliability and performance of power supplies and associated products and will be Co-chaired by Tony O'Brien of Cisco Systems and Brian Zahnstecher of PowerRox.

The Committee held an inaugural meeting on Thursday August 10. The committee already has 10 members representing a mix of industry professionals including power supply vendors, OEMs/customers and semiconductor component vendors, ensuring broad coverage of issues that affect the whole power electronics industry. The first action of the Committee is to survey selected industry veterans to develop a prioritized list of the most pertinent initiatives related to reliability. The output of this survey will be combined with a focus on the robustness of software/firmware in digital power solutions and will determine the initial, tangible issues and direction for the Committee efforts.

If you are interested in having a direct hand in identifying and addressing key industry issues that plague developments, inhibit customer applications, delay schedules, increase costs, and drive field infant mortality rates, then please join us. Monthly meetings will be held via teleconference on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 11am Central Time, with the next scheduled call on September 13.

For more information and to join the membership list for the Reliability Committee , please contact the PSMA Association Office at power@psma.com.

About Our Members
Posted: 2017-9-2

ICF (NASDAQ:ICFI) is a global consulting and technology services provider with more than 5,000 professionals focused on making big things possible for our clients. We are business analysts, policy specialists, technologists, researchers, digital strategists, social scientists and creatives. Since 1969, government and commercial clients have worked with ICF to overcome their toughest challenges on issues that matter profoundly to their success. Come engage with us at icf.com.

We are an affiliate member of PSMA, forming a crucial link between the industry and government agencies focused on energy efficiency such the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Natural Resources Canada. We support these clients' decision-making through industry relationships and technical insight and have been the lead consultant to the EPA ENERGY STAR program for over 20 years.

In addition to government programs, we also support private-sector clients, including more than 75 Fortune 500 companies for whom we provide support ranging from technical expertise in sustainable materials management (SMM) or lifecycle assessment (LCA) to comprehensive services that drive integrated sustainability programs.

The hallmarks of ICF's approach are experience and integration.  We recognize the need for credible, current data, and for consistent life-cycle boundaries and assumptions.  Having designed and implemented a framework to convert information on life-cycle processes into GHG and energy factors that are consistent with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change guidance, we are uniquely well-qualified to apply our expertise to solve problems and identify opportunities for emission reductions for other firms. We have developed life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions factors for more than 50 materials types and have examined the implications of emissions abatement during production and recycling among the international electronics industry.

Our team is equipped with in-house and commercial LCA tools, including SimaPro and openLCA software, and a license to the ecoinvent v3 database. We can further help with:

  • Environmental Performance Case Studies
  • Corporate Baseline Environmental Footprint Analysis
  • Facility Attribute and Activity Data for Sustainability Analyses
  • External Reporting support
  • Tracking Contributions to UN Sustainable Development Goals
  • Climate Risk Assessment and Mitigation

At ICF, our corporate philosophy is simple: Hire the best people. Reward their creativity and entrepreneurship. Maintain the highest standards of integrity, ethics, and quality. And do this always with a clear focus on our clients' needs. Let us know how we can help with your toughest sustainability challenges—please contact Matt Malinowski, Technical Specialist, electronics energy efficiency at Matt.Malinowski@icf.com or 202-862-2693 Bobby Renz, Manager, climate, sustainability, and materials management, at Bobby.Renz@icf.com or 212-656-9216.

Provided by Matt Malinowski, Technical Specialist, ICF

Demonstrating core competence for more than 65 years and a proven reliable partner in the magnetics industry, Micrometals Inc. is an engineering driven company striving to exceed our customers' requirements for catalog or custom magnetic components.  Headquartered in Anaheim, California with two factories in the United States and two factories in China, Micrometals offers application engineering and technical support from North America and China as well as stocking warehouses located in Germany and Hong Kong.

Micrometals materials are organized into 4 product groups: Radio Frequency, Power Conversion, 200C Series™ High Temperature and MicroCubes.  Micrometals Alloy Powder Cores, formerly Arnold Powder Core Division of Arnold Magnetic Technology, are organized into 6 material groups: Sendust, Molypermalloy, FluxSan™, Hi-Flux™, Optilloy™ and the recently introduced SH High Frequency Sendust.

This new SH Material has high frequency losses that are one third that of traditional Sendust material. The lower loss of High Frequency Sendust will enable it to be used with switching frequencies up to about 5 MHz. This new material was developed to meet the demands of the Power Conversion Industry's move to the latest in GaN and SiC switching technologies.

Power Conversion Engineers are pushing switching frequencies higher in an effort to reduce cost, minimize size and increase device efficiency.  As a result, magnetic component design engineers are challenged to find materials that can operate at 1-20 MHz or higher.  The SH Sendust material or traditional carbonyl iron powder materials can be considered as an alternate option for MnZn ferrites which may have increased core loss and the gap losses at this higher frequency or NiZn ferrites for high cost and high hysteresis loss.  Sample core kits of both SH Sendust or high frequency iron powder materials are available by contacting the Micrometals sales department or local representative.

The wide variety of material choices can be daunting.  In order to assist the design engineer in the selection process Micrometals has introduced an on-line Inductor Design Software and Inductor Analyzer.  This engineering tool is FREE for registered users and is a web-based service that can be located at the Micrometals APC website (www.MicrometalsAPC.com).

The software part database includes standard catalog parts from both Micrometals and Micrometals Alloy Powder Cores.  Additionally, the user can create custom heights to precisely meet the customer application specifications.

The inductor design calculator accepts inputs for DC inductors or PFC chokes and generates core and winding suggestions based on user defined design parameters.

The design software outputs can be exported for further analysis or individual winding suggestions can be transferred to the Inductor Analyzer feature.  The Analyzer feature allows users to start with a wound core and customize or optimize to change number of turns, wire gauge or consider alternate materials or part sizes and immediately output electrical and dimension characteristics.

Micrometals will gladly extend engineering and design assistance to aid in your core selection.  Please direct application questions to Applications@Micrometals.com.  Additional information about high frequency magnetics and the inductor design software is available at our websites:  www.Micrometals.com, www.MicrometalsAPC.com

Questions about samples, price and availability of all products above can be directed to Sales@micrometals.com.

Provided by Joseph Barbeito, Director of Sales & Marketing, Micrometals, Inc.


PSMA's Power Technology Roadmap 2017
Posted: 2017-7-21
Will Power Empower the Electronics Industry?

The Power Sources Manufacturers' Association (PSMA) published its tenth and latest edition of  the Power Technology Roadmap (PTR 2017).  PSMA undertakes this project, where participants from respective fields analyze trends in key power supply parameters, applications, components and emerging technologies, once every two years. From its early days in 1994, when the first PSMA Power Technology Roadmap was released, it has gone through significant evolution in its scope and content. 

This edition of the Roadmap is a product of two-year effort involving 82 participants that includes online webinars, technical articles and online surveys that provided inputs for forecasting. The webinar topics are wide-ranging and all-encompassing, covering as many aspects of power supply technology as possible. Webinars in this edition of the Roadmap include wireless transfer, component technologies, passive devices, high frequency magnetics, isolation technologies and many others. The technical articles are very focused in their pre-defined subject matter and the online surveys are designed to gather information to project future trends in key parameters. Such a unique combination of subjects and scope prepared with the inputs of knowlegable participants from the industy, makes this report unique and highly comprehensive.

The Roadmap provides both a quantitative and a qualitative analysis of technology. While the online surveys are used to gather quantitative data, the qualitative analysis is provided by industry experts who have contributed to the report either by presenting a webinar or by writing an article on a specific topic.

At the core, the PTR provides a three-dimensional overview of three key aspects of power technology:

  • Trends in key metrics in following power supplies and converters:
    • Ac-dc front-end power supplies (200 W – 2000 W)
    • External ac-dc power supplies (10 W – 100 W)
    • Isolated dc-dc converters (100 W, regulated)
    • Non-isolated dc-dc converters (subdivided into the standard non-isolated dc-dc and power supply in a package (PSiP) converters)

These products were selected because they are widely used in the industry. The same products were used in the past, thus making a comparative analysis easy. The key metrics used for trend analysis include efficiency, cost, power density and reliability. With 2016 as the base year, the projections were done for 2019 and 2021. In addition, the report provides some retrospective analysis that checks past forecasts, to see if they were accurate or inaccurate. This analysis will be used to make any future adjustments.

  • Component technology that includes, power semiconductors, ICs and magnetic materials  
  • Applications trends and emerging Technologies:

Application trends are included for automotive, computing, consumer, lighting, medical, motor control, battery changing and energy harvesting. The emerging technologies are associated with magnetics, integrated magnetics, 3D power packaging, additive manufacturing and nanofluids.

The Roadmap is an important report that can provide companies with information about various technologies, data for benchmarking their current products and technology trends for strategic planning.

The organizers for the 2017 PSMA Power Technology Roadmap have made an interesting argument that the Roadmap is designed to "Empower the Electronics Industry". It is stated in the title of the report. At first glance, the concept that power supply technology will empower the electronics industry seems like wishful thinking or even preposterous, but it should not be rejected out of hand. Dr. Conor Quinn, Co-Chair of the organizing committee gave a plenary presentation at APEC 2017 in Tampa that focused on this stream of thought.

Dr. Quinn stated, that in the past the power supply industry was technology-responsive to all established and traditional markets such as consumer, computers and networking. Companies or industries engaged in these markets did not much care about the development of power supplies as these markets designed their own products and then purchased a power supply as an afterthought to fulfill their specific needs. However, this may not be the case in the development of emerging new markets including automotive, solar inverters, variable frequency drives and LEDs. These markets are power-technology driven markets. Power is not a secondary after-thought, but is central to the development of these markets. Many new applications are power-centric as alternative energy and efficient use of energy takes center stage in the development of future markets. For companies participating in such new products, knowledge of the power supply technology and its evolution will be essential for their successful development. The new 2017 Power Technology Roadmap will provide that information, knowledge and insight. It is designed to empower the electronics industry.



Provided by Mohan Mankikar,
President, Micro-Tech Consultants



PSMA Magnetics Committee Magnetics Workshop
Posted: 2017-7-12

Power Magnetics @ High Frequency- Transforming the Black Magic to Engineering
Date: Saturday March 25 2017
APEC 2017 Tampa Florida

The "Power Magnetics @ High Frequency – Transforming the Black Magic to Engineering" workshop sponsored by the PSMA Magnetics Committee and IEEE PELS was held on the day before APEC 2017, Saturday March 25, 2017 from 7:00 AM thru 6:00 PM in Tampa Florida.

This second workshop continued the tradition of the inaugural workshop by bringing together experts from all aspects of the magnetics industry, from research and academic organizations, world renowned consultants and the everyday heroes of magnetics design who are responsible for commercializing magnetic products on a regular basis. The number of workshop attendees increased to over 150 with about 85% of the attendees from industry and 15% of the attendees from academia/research. The agenda of the workshop included panel discussions and technology demonstrations to supplement invited lecture type presentations which led to high energy dialogue between the attendees and the invited experts throughout the workshop.

The purpose and the focus of the workshop was to

  • identify the latest improvements in areas of magnetic materials, coil (winding) design, construction and fabrication, 
  • identify, discuss and demonstrate evaluation and characterization techniques as well as modelling and simulation tools needed to meet the technical expectations and requirements for power magnetics operating at higher frequencies
  • identify and discuss the technical expectations and requirements of higher application frequencies and emerging topologies that are being driven by continuous advances in circuits topologies, semi-conductor devices driven by new market applications.

Many thanks to the invited presenters and panelists who included Dr. Johann Kolar (ETH), Donna Kepcia (Magnetics), Dr Ray Ridley (Ridley Engineering), Dr. Charles Sullivan (Dartmouth), Bruce Carsten, Zoran Pavlovic (Tyndall), Ed Herbert (PSMA), Chuck Wild (Dexter Magnetics), J. C. Sun (Bs&T Technologies), Andreas Muesing (Gecko-Simulations), Rodney Rogers (Allstar Magnetics), Ryu Nagahama (IWATSU), Lorandt Foelkel (Wurth Elektronik), Chris Oliver (Micrometals), Dr. Bernard Michuad (EPCOS), Jan Simecek (EPCOS), Laili Wang (Xi'an Jiaotong University), John Lynch (Fair Rite Products).Based on post workshop survey results, the High Frequency Magnetics workshop series will continue to be held the Saturday before APEC. The third workshop will be in conjunction with APEC 2018 in San Antonio Texas. To increase the interactions during the third workshop, an increased emphasis on the technology demonstration sessions will be pursued to increase the "hands on" and "how to" dialogue. The third workshop will also continue to drive efforts to improve the characterization and specification of magnetic materials and magnetic cores to support the power electronics industry, addresses technical issues such as fringing as well as identify efforts to move the industry forward in terms of magnetic material and magnetic structure development.

Anyone interested in participating as a presenter as part of the technology demonstration session during the next workshop planned for March 3, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas should contact Matt Wilkowski (matt.wilkowski@intel.com). We are looking forward to the third workshop and driving the industry forward to meet the expectations of the workshop attendees.

Organizing Committee 
Steve Carlsen Raytheon
Ed Herbert Independent Inventor
Rodney Rogers Allstar Magnetics
Chuck Wild Dexter Magnetics
Fred Weber Future Technology Worldwide
Matt Wilkowski Intel

International Workshop on Integrated Power Packaging (IWIPP) 2017
Posted: 2017-7-2

The 2017 International Workshop on Integrated Power Packaging (IWIPP), which was held at the Technical University of Delft from April 5-7, was a great event focused on upcoming developments in packaging from the device to the system, with 80 total attendees across industry, research, and academic institutions in the fields of power packaging and system design. This year's attendees were exposed to three days of inter-disciplinary technical content focused on the enhanced understanding of the major issues within the power packaging industry. On both Wednesday and Thursday morning, the conference agenda was opened with curated tutorials – one on Packaging & Thermal Management by Dr. Patrick McCluskey of the University of Maryland, and one on Electrical Insulation by Dr. Thierry Lebey of the University of Toulouse. Friday morning introduced a Modeling & Reliability Panel Session with leaders from different simulation and modeling fields across both academic and industry organizations. This year's technical sessions addressed Systems & Circuits,  Power Modules, Packaging & Interconnects, Thermal Management, and Sensors, Passives, & EMI. In addition to the technical sessions, tutorials, and panel sessions, each day also included invited keynote presentations selected to discuss the future of the wide bandgap and power packaging industry.

Wolfspeed's Brice McPherson, a power module design engineer, presenting on how innovative thermal management techniques can improve the Hybrid-Electric Vehicle Market.
Second day of Technical Sessions.

The 2017 IWIPP Student Travel Grant Award winner was Andrea Wallace of the University of Arkansas, who presented on her research group's work with Thermo-Mechanical Reliability of Silicon Carbide Schottky Diode Flip-Chip packaging. Andrea is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Center for Space & Planetary Sciences Department, pursuing research in the field of Power Packaging for High Temperature Applications under Dr. Alan Mantooth. Andrea's Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, coupled with her career goal to work with space-bound systems, lead her to choose the power packaging research field and to attend the 2017 IWIPP event, due to its inter-disciplinary nature.

General Chair, Dr. Ty McNutt, of Wolfspeed presenting IWIPP's 2017 Student Travel Grant Award Winner, Andrea Wallace, with her conference stipend.
View from Wolfspeed's Conference Banquet activity, which was a guided tour through the historic canals of Delft.

While the conference was heavy with technical sessions, there were also plenty of networking opportunities available to attendees. On Wednesday, upon conclusion of the technical sessions, attendees were invited to a Poster, Lab Tour, & Exhibition Reception, sponsored by Murata. There were three posters, which represented technical papers included in the proceedings, and five technical demonstrations from TU Delft researchers; a tour of TU Delft's famous High Voltage laboratory was also provided during Murata's Welcome Reception. On Thursday evening, the conference attendees celebrated a successful event with a boat trip through the historic canals of Delft, followed by the Wolfspeed Conference Banquet where prizes from IWIPP's industrial sponsors were raffled off. Winners received: an Apple Watch, courtesy of Wolfspeed; an Apple iPad, courtesy of Murata; a Lego® Mindstorms® set, courtesy of Littelfuse; and Holland's famous Stroopwafels, courtesy of ISP Systems.

The 2017 event brought together a multi-faceted group of supporting technical organizations; in addition to the Power Sources Manufacturers Associations (PSMA), the event also included: the IEEE Components, Packaging & Manufacturing Technology Society; the IEEE Dielectric & Electrical Insulation Society; the IEEE Power Electronics Society; and the European Center for Power Electronics. These societies all remain committed to expanding the future development of the International Workshop on Integrated Power Packaging. The next International Workshop on Integrated Power Packaging is currently being planned, and the 2019 location will be announced on the website in the coming months. For 2019, the IWIPP Steering Committee plans to expand its commitment to bringing together inter-disciplinary thought leaders in the field of power packaging to discuss innovative solutions to the industry's biggest challenges. Please stay tuned for more information about the event from PSMA and to learn how you can become involved in the 2019 event.

Provided by Lauren Kegley, IWIPP 2017 Sponsorship & Publications Chair


Call for Papers: The 5th Workshop on Wide Bandgap Power Devices and Applications (WiPDA 2017)
Posted: 2017-7-1


Monday, October 30 – Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort, Albuquerque, NM USA

The IEEE Workshop on Wide Bandgap Power Devices and Applications (WiPDA, www.wipda.org ), sponsored by IEEE and PSMA, is a fast-growing yearly event which provides a forum for device scientists, circuit designers, and application engineers to share technology updates, research findings, development experience, and application knowledge. The 5th WiPDA will be held from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, 2017, at Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort, Albuquerque, NM.

What to see in Albuquerque?

Albuquerque is home to the University of New Mexico (UNM), Kirtland Air Force Base, Sandia National Laboratories, the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, and the Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute. The Sandia Mountains run along the eastern side of Albuquerque and the Rio Grande river flows through the city, north to south. Albuquerque is also the home of the International Balloon Fiesta, the world's largest gathering of hot-air balloons from around the globe. The event takes place during the first week of October. The workshop venue is the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort just north of Albuquerque. It offers a perfect combination of luxurious amenities, culture, history, and stunning landscapes that create a one-of-a-kind experience. Visitors can play a round of championship golf at the Twin Warriors golf course, ride a rescue horse, or watch a radiant sunset while dining on fresh, regional cuisine at the Corn Maiden restaurant. This year's poster session and banquet will be held at the Cottonwoods Pavilion, located on the Tamaya grounds along the banks of the Rio Grande river.

This year's event will have a similar structure as previous years, including an extensive program of tutorials; keynote, technical, and poster sessions; a panel discussion; an exhibition; and a banquet.

The topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Heteroepitaxial and bulk materials growth
  • Gate dielectrics and surface passivation
  • Device structures and fabrication techniques
  • Device characterization and modeling
  • Very high efficiency and compact converters
  • SOAs including short-circuit, spike, and transient tolerance
  • Harsh environment (e.g. high temperature) operation and reliability
  • Packaging, power modules, and ICs
  • Hard-switched and soft-switched applications
  • Common-mode and EMI management
  • Gate drive and other auxiliary circuits
  • High-performance passive components
  • Applications in renewable energy and storage, transportation, industrial drives, and grid power systems

Technical Papers: Technical papers addressing all aspects of wide-bandgap power electronics are welcome. Technical oral sessions will be held Tuesday and Wednesday, and a poster session will be held Tuesday night. All presented papers will be included in the conference proceedings and submitted to the IEEExplore database.

Tutorials, Keynote Sessions, Panel Session, and Exhibitions

WiPDA 2017 will offer tutorials covering both device and application topics on Monday afternoon. Keynote sessions will be held Tuesday and Wednesday, in which leading experts from academia, industry, and research institutes will share their insights on technology developments and future trends. A panel session with leading experts from US federal agencies, industry, and academia will be part of the meeting. Also, a number of booths will be available for exhibition.

Student Travel Grants

The organizing committee anticipates being able to fund 16 student travel grants at $625 each, supported equally by PELS and PSMA.

Key dates for this year's event: 

Two-page abstract deadline: June 16, 2017
Notification of acceptance: July 21, 2017
Final paper submission: August 25, 2017

If you have any questions, please contact the organizing committee:

Robert Kaplar, Sandia National Labs (rjkapla@sandia.gov )
Maryam Saeedifard, Georgia Tech (maryam@ece.gatech.edu)
Sameh Khalil, Infineon (sameh.khalil@infineon.com)
Mike Mazzola, Mississippi State (mazzola@ece.msstate.edu)
Fang Luo, University of Arkansas (fangluo@uark.edu)

We are looking forward to meeting you in Albuquerque, New Mexico!


2017 iNEMI Roadmap
Posted: 2017-5-5

The complete 2017 iNEMI Roadmap is now available. The final chapters are in, and the full roadmap document plus 100-page executive summary are ready for download. 

With 28 chapters and 2000+ pages, this is the largest roadmap we’ve published to date. It includes:

  • A new chapter on Internet of Things
  • Four chapters not updated or included last cycle:
    • Aerospace & Defense
    • Information Management 
    • Packaging & Component Substrates 
    • Test, Inspection & Measurement 
  • Expanded scope for two chapters:
    • Connectors now includes electronic and photonic connectors
    • Interconnect Substrates-Ceramic is now Ceramic Substrates & Photovoltaic Technology

For more information, visit www.inemi.org.


The Trump Administration's Impact on the Power Electronics' Industry
Posted: 2017-3-2

Even though the free market rules the business world, government policies and regulations on trade can shape the industry structure. Usually companies prefer more free trade and less government regulation. Companies like access to markets that provide higher revenues and higher profits, while governments like higher employment for its citizens. Sometimes these intentions can be contradictory. 

The electronic trade is vastly global. Although products from US companies are prominent and highly visible, most of these products, especially hardware, are manufactured in China. In addition, many components including active and passive devices are manufactured by multi-national companies located in Europe and Japan. From a trade perspective, the United States generally remains the most open country with the least restrictions. The new Trump administration has taken a staunch protectionist stance with its “America First” policy. It has promised to restrict trade by forcing companies to manufacture products in the U.S. to increase domestic employment. 

So, what will be the impact of the Trump administration’s policies on the electronics industry? The electronics industry, primarily hardware manufacturing, has moved to China; President Trump has consistently mentioned China as a currency manipulator that is engaged in unfair trade practices and has gamed the system for its own gains resulting in America’s loss. It is true that despite having original and superior product design, America has failed to “scale up the products.” America designs products but China manufactures them. Thus, China’s employment in electronic manufacturing has increased significantly. Though Mr. Trump is addressing this issue today, America’s weakness in mass scale manufacturing was succinctly addressed by the late Mr. Andy Grove, former CEO of Intel. He wrote a landmark article, “How America Can Create Jobs”, in Bloomberg Businessweek almost 7 years ago. Dr. Grove, argued that just having R&D is not sufficient, scaling or mass manufacturing of the product is also important and necessary. He mentioned that “scaling is hard work but necessary to make innovation matter.” In addition, Mr. Grove stated that job creation must be the Number 1 objective of state economic policy. This has been Mr. Trump’s slogan all along, and many will be surprised to find that Mr. Grove’s views expressed in the Bloomberg BusinessWeek article were quite similar to that of Mr. Trump’s today. 

On February 8, 2017, Intel’s CEO Mr. Brian Krzanich announced that the company will invest $7 billion in an Arizona plant that will employ 3,000 people. Mr. Krzanich made the announcement during a White House visit with Mr. Trump- but NPR’s Marketplace reported that this decision was 4 years in the making. Though Intel can manufacture its chips in the US, due to its highly-automated processes, most of the electronic hardware manufacturing has moved to China and is not expected to shift back to the United States anytime soon. China remains the global manufacturing center for the electronic hardware, including power supplies.

Will President Trump change this global order with tariffs, duties or quotas?

Apple’s iPhone provides an insight into the strength of Chinese manufacturing. It is not just about low-labor costs, rather China seems to have the entire manufacturing infrastructure in place together with strong government support and fire-in-the-belly attitude when it comes to manufacturing iconic electronic products like Apple’s iPhone.

For insight into Chinese manufacturing, one has to read an excellent article written by Charles Duhigg and Keith Bradsher of the New York Times, about why Apple makes iPhones and iPads in China instead of the United States. The essence of the article is that when Steve Jobs wanted to change iPhone’s screen from plastic to glass, only Foxconn in China could scale up and deliver the product in six weeks in very large quantities. Though the glass itself was made by Corning, a US company, there was no US company that could deliver the product in such high quantities in such a short timeframe. Duhigg and Bradsher reported that the end-to-end process of building the iPhones required 8,700 mid-level engineers. In the United States, Apple estimated it would have taken 9 months to hire these many engineers; in China, it took 15 days. The United States just could not match China’s manufacturing and infrastructure prowess. Within 3 months, Apple sold a million iPhones. Today iPhones are considered one of the greatest products of 21st century that have changed lives of millions of people.

At least in electronics hardware, the US has lost its super mass scale manufacturing to China. Power supplies also reflect this situation with about 70% of power supplies being manufactured in China. Mr. Trump wants to impose a 35% tariff on Chinese goods coming to US. China said it will retaliate. Will this increased tariff suddenly make the US into a mass-manufacturing haven for the electronic goods or just create a devastating trade war?

On February, 9, 2017, in a letter to President Xi Jinping, President Trump called for constructive US-China relationship. The future awaits in suspense.


Provided by Mohan Mankikar,
President, Micro-Tech Consultants



Industry’s First ‘zigbee PRO with Green Power Certified Platform’ Unveiled by Microchip
Posted: 2017-2-14
BitCloud 4.0 Complete zigbee Software Development Kit is Available Now

The industry’s first zigbee alliance certified zigbee® platform with zigbee PRO and Green Power features (formerly known as zigbee 3.0) from a semiconductor company is now available from Microchip Technology Inc., a leading provider of microcontroller, mixed-signal, analog and Flash-IP solutions. With greater interoperability and lower latency than ever before, this software stack, and corresponding BitCloud 4.0 software development kit, is ideal for the design of home automation, commercial lighting, smart energy and Internet of Things (IoT) applications. For more information about the complete software development kit, visit: www.microchip.com/bitcloud.

The zigbee certified solution enables cross-functional device support and will be backward-compatible with existing zigbee certified products for seamless interoperability. Along with the zigbee PRO (2015) feature set, developers can expect to find features such as low latency suitable for RF remote applications, mesh networking for large networks such as lighting applications, and the Green Power benefits of an energy harvesting switch.

The zigbee PRO Green Power feature, making its debut on the new certified software stack, enables battery-less devices to securely join a network while leveraging eco-friendly energy sources such as light, vibration or motion. Additionally, zigbee Light Link and zigbee Home Automation device types are now fully supported.

“We’re proud to be the first silicon manufacturer to offer a zigbee certified platform with zigbee PRO and Green Power features,” said Steve Caldwell, vice president of Microchip’s Wireless Solutions Group. “With both our hardware and SDK, we’re able to provide best-in-class functionality for a wide range of applications from large-scale commercial lighting to ultra-low power battery-less devices.” 

“Having a long-standing member company like Microchip continue to invest in the creation and commercialization of new platforms based on our latest standards shows the strength of the zigbee market,” said Victor Berrios, Vice President of Technology, zigbee alliance. “This zigbee platform enables developers to create new, ground-breaking and interoperable designs for connected applications.”


PSMA Offers Power Supply Safety & Compliance Database as Free Resource for All Industry Professionals
Posted: 2016-8-31
On-line database provides comprehensive review of international operational, environmental and safety standards; access offered free to PSMA members and non-members

The Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) announces the availability of a new on-line Safety & Compliance Database. The continually updated resource lists the many state, national and worldwide organizations currently active in establishing and maintaining safety, electromagnetic compatibility, material toxicity and environmental standards for power supplies used in commercial applications. Recognizing the database as an invaluable tool for power electronics industry professionals, the PSMA is offering it free of charge to both PSMA members and non-members alike.

Intended users of the Safety & Compliance Database are those who design power systems for products that will be offered in the global marketplace, and who therefore need to comply with current and evolving safety and standards for their target markets. The database can be searched by specific applications; giving the most recent status of standards, identifying key documents, meetings and milestones associated with each standard, and providing links to the appropriate websites of controlling organizations.

“As companies design their new products for global markets, they have to grapple with current, new – and sometimes conflicting – safety standards and regulations,” reported Kevin Parmenter and Jim Spangler, co-chairs of the PSMA Safety & Compliance Committee. “Our new Safety & Compliance Database provides a vital resource for engineers and product planners as they keep abreast of standards, including ongoing activities, proposed changes and updates, and information on the latest versions.”

The PSMA contracted with Anagenesis Inc. to create and provide continual updates to the database. Interested users can opt in to receive weekly email alerts about new information and changes. The database also features the ability for users to request permission to direct and track information on emerging standards, which enables the database to evolve and improve.

The Safety & Compliance Database is easily accessible from the Quick Links on the upper right of the PSMA homepage or the Safety Database tab of the Safety & Compliance Technical Forum. Anyone who already has an account on the PSMA website, just needs to log in to access the database. Those who have not yet registered must follow an easy registration process to request access.

PSMA Offers Power Supply Safety & Compliance Database as Free Resource for All Industry Professionals
Posted: 2016-7-1
On-line database provides comprehensive review of international operational, environmental and safety standards; access offered free to PSMA members and non-members

The Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) announces the availability of a new on-line Safety & Compliance Database. The continually updated resource lists the many state, national and worldwide organizations currently active in establishing and maintaining safety, electromagnetic compatibility, material toxicity and environmental standards for power supplies used in commercial applications. Recognizing the database as an invaluable tool for power electronics industry professionals, the PSMA is offering it free of charge to both PSMA members and non-members alike.

Intended users of the Safety & Compliance Database are those who design power systems for products that will be offered in the global marketplace, and who therefore need to comply with current and evolving safety and standards for their target markets. The database can be searched by specific applications; giving the most recent status of standards, identifying key documents, meetings and milestones associated with each standard, and providing links to the appropriate websites of controlling organizations.

“As companies design their new products for global markets, they have to grapple with current, new – and sometimes conflicting – safety standards and regulations,” reported Kevin Parmenter and Jim Spangler, co-chairs of the PSMA Safety & Compliance Committee. “Our new Safety & Compliance Database provides a vital resource for engineers and product planners as they keep abreast of standards, including ongoing activities, proposed changes and updates, and information on the latest versions.”

The PSMA contracted with Anagenesis Inc. to create and provide continual updates to the database. Interested users can opt in to receive weekly email alerts about new information and changes. The database also features the ability for users to request permission to direct and track information on emerging standards, which enables the database to evolve and improve.

The Safety & Compliance Database is easily accessible from the Quick Links on the upper right of the PSMA homepage or the Safety Database tab of the Safety & Compliance Technical Forum. Anyone who already has an account on the PSMA website, just needs to log in to access the database. Those who have not yet registered must follow an easy registration process to request access.

PSMA Safety & Compliance Committee
Posted: 2015-6-22

PSMA is pleased to announce the formation of a new technical committee, the Safety & Compliance Committee. If you or your company is involved with the design and marketing of power products it is critical that they comply with the safety and emission standards where they are sold. You are invited to participate in the Safety & Compliance Committee and benefit from the discussions and alerts on existing and changing standards. 


The PSMA Safety & Compliance Committee mission is to provide a resource for our members and the power electronics community in the dynamic area of safety, regulatory and compliance issues and requirements concerning power electronics. These include:

  • Monitor trends, developments and standards covering military, industrial, computing, telecom/datacom and medical aspects of power conversion electronic products 
  • A focus on US and global EMI-RFI, safety, surge- transients, hold-up time standards
  • Discussion of existing and evolving standards and trends that apply to power converters and to provide a resource to members and the industry


The committee will support a comprehensive on line data base which will be a repository of standards and requirements that affect the power supplies and which will be periodically updated to include the status, trends and issues and upcoming changes by region and country. It is expected that the database would be updated and administrated using a similar process as for the PSMA Energy Efficiency database currently on the PSMA website. 

Membership activities

Members of the Committee are encouraged to participate in monthly calls – in general each of the PSMA technical committees meet once a month via teleconference. 
As the saying goes, “Many hands make light work” and participants are invited who are knowledgeable and can actively contribute or are interested in networking with others in the industry to share experiences or concerns. 
In addition to the database activities, other committee activities may include organizing an Industry Session for APEC on Safety and Compliance issues and contributing to the PSMA Power Technology Roadmap.


We would like to invite all parties interested in regulatory and safety aspects of power electronics to attend and participate. Help us to understand and to communicate the challenge and impact facing our industry in conforming to these evolving global standards. We encourage you to join our meetings or invite others in your organization involved in these areas.

So, let us know if you or others in your organization are interested in becoming an active member of the PSMA Safety & Compliance Committee. We expect you will find that you will get as much out or more than you put into it. 
If interested, please send contact information to power@psma.com.

Provided by Kevin Parmenter, Safety & Compliance Committee Chair


Why Should Your Company Be A Member Of PSMA?
Posted: 2014-12-21

The PSMA is a not-for-profit organization incorporated in the state of California whose purpose is to enhance the stature and reputation of its members and their products, to improve their knowledge of technological and other developments related to power sources, and to educate the entire electronics industry, plus academia, as well as government and industry agencies as to the importance of, and relevant applications for, all types of power sources and conversion devices.

By joining with other leaders in the Industry, you and your company will have a greater voice and influence on the directions of the Power Sources Industry. Some specific benefits of membership include:

  • Networking: The opportunity to meet and interact with counterparts in other companies on an ongoing basis
  • Involvement: The opportunity to be involved with the planning and managing of APEC—the Applied Power Electronics Conference-- sessions that focus on the specific interest of members
  • Participation: The opportunity to participate in committees, workgroups and studies to derive a better understanding of market trends, industry trends and better operational procedures to improve performance
  • Discounts: Individuals from PSMA member companies receive discounts on registration fees for attending APEC
  • Industry Trends: Increase awareness and knowledge of trends and factors that can impact your career and provide valuable inputs for product planning
  • Company Profile: All member company profiles are listed on the PSMA Web Site together with a hyperlink directly to the company Web Site
  • PSMA Publications: Regular and Associate member companies receive a copy of all new PSMA publications and reports with discounts for additional copies. Affiliate member companies can purchase PSMA publications at a discount
  • Employment Resources: Post job openings on the PSMA website and browse student resumes
  • Benchmarking: The opportunity to participate in benchmarking studies with other companies in your industry
  • PSMA Newsletter: Receive “Update” the quarterly newsletter of the PSMA, with informative articles on activities in the industry and a calendar of upcoming industry events
  • Spotlight Banner: Your company’s products can be featured as a banner on the PSMA Home Page

PSMA membership dues are modest in comparison to the benefits offered. Is your company a member of PSMA? If not, why not? You can find the membership application on the PSMA web site at http://www.psma.com/webforms/psma-membership-application.

We look forward to receiving your application in the near future so you can take advantage of the registration discount at APEC. The 2015 Power Technology Roadmap will be available in mid March and all Regular and Associate members of PSMA will receive a free copy of the report as a benefit of membership. Affiliate members will receive a discount on the Roadmap and other PSMA reports.


Get More From Your PSMA Membership – Join A Committee
Posted: 2011-8-28


PSMA membership provides many benefits for you and your company. It gives you personally the opportunity to meet, network and interact with your counterparts in other companies on an ongoing basis. It also provides an opportunity to be involved with the planning and managing of APEC, as well as giving you and your colleagues a discount on registration fees for attending APEC.


Your company gets a listing on the PSMA web site with a hyperlink directly to your company web site. In addition, your company has an invitation to provide a Spotlight Banner to showcase its latest product on the PSMA Home Page

Your company also receives free or discounted copies of PSMA publications and reports,

An important membership benefit is the opportunity to join and participate in one or more of the PSMA Technical Committees. Participating in one or more committees is the best way to increase the benefits from your company and your personal PSMA membership. People involved in PSMA Technical Committees all agree that their investment returns multiple benefits that surpass the time spent participating – both for their company and for their own careers. Just ask someone who is a committee member. The committee provides the opportunity to network with knowledgeable people who are influencing the power sources industry.

You are encouraged to join a committee and get involved in their activities. Most committees meet about once a month for about one hour by teleconference. You are welcome to attend a committee meeting before making a decision to join the group. If you are interested in attending one of the meetings, please contact the Association Office for call-in information.


This is an open invitation to participate in or join any committee. Bring your experience, interest and enthusiasm. Currently PSMA has the following committees:

  • Alternative Energy
  • Capacitors
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Energy Harvesting
  • Industry-Education
  • Magnetics
  • Membership
  • Marketing
  • Nanotechnology
  • Power Electronics Packaging
  •  Semiconductors
  • Technology Roadmap

Your participation will contribute added value to the subject and enhance your own knowledge.

It’s a great way to network with your colleagues.

For more information describing the committees and the dates for the next meetings, please view the PSMA web site or contact the PSMA office at power@psma.com.



Power Electronics Timeline DRAFT
Posted: 2011-6-29

The Power Sources Manufacturers Association has drafted a power electronics timeline and a "corporate" genealogy chart for the industry to review. As we get inputs, we will be updating these files on a periodic basis. Consequently these files are subject to change until we hear from all affected parties or until enough time has transpired at which time the files will be finalized.

If you have any inputs to share, please contact ada@adaclock.com or the PSMA office.

PSMA Provides On-Line Energy Efficiency Standards Database
Posted: 2010-5-1

The Power Sources Manufacturers Association (PSMA) has announced availability of its On-line Energy Efficiency Database (EEDB) as a service to the industry. The number of energy efficiency standards and the world wide agencies that generate them continue to grow daily. It is time consuming for an individual or company to keep track of the many actions and activities by government and industry groups. The PSMA on-line energy efficiency standards database provides one click access to the very latest global standards and initiatives.

Some of the useful features:

  • Quick access to world region, agency, or standards application
  • Expanded data includes list of specific standards generated by an agency and parametric specifications for each regulation
  • Expanded description of regulations and agencies
  • Enhanced descriptions that include html code for quick linking to agency site or database location
  • Latest schedule of standards meetings

Dusty Becker, PSMA Board Chairman and chair of the PSMA Energy Efficiency Committee, states that The PSMA On-line Energy Efficiency Data Base which incorporates a number of improvements suggested by product planners to keep current is a valuable resource for engineers. We are pleased to offer this resource free of charge to our membership and to the industry. 

PSMA Presentation
Posted: 2008-4-3

The PSMA Marketing Committee has prepared this presentation describing PSMA. You can use this presentation to inform your colleagues about the benefits of PSMA membership. You can also show this presentation at meetings you are attending on behalf of PSMA.

Handbook of Standardized Terminology now available on "Members Only"
Posted: 2008-1-4

The Handbook of Standardized Terminology For The Power Sources Industry-Third Edition - has been made available as a download on the Members Only area of the PSMA website. Revised and expanded, this unique publication includes definitions for more than 1200 terms related to power electronics which were especially selected for the power electronics professional. The Third Edition also contains illustrations and four new appendices, including a listing of EMI specifications, excerpts from international standards of units and symbols, along with guides for authors of technical papers. Many new magnetic terms are described in this new 126-page third edition that are of particular interest to the practicing designer and marketer of power supplies and related products. Valuable information regarding worldwide power sources, standards agencies, and military specifications has been retained, updated and expanded from the previous edition. Titles of the appendices are: Testing and Standards Agencies; Designer's Reference; World Voltages and Frequencies; Military Specifications; EMI Specifications; Writing Technical Papers for Archival Publications; Units, Symbols and Style Guide; A Brief Writing Guide. These added resources provide concise, easy-to-use references for engineeers involved in technical writing and presentations. If your company is a member of PSMA, you may register for the "Members Only" area using your email address. The registration form requires you to enter your company PSMA member number. You may contact the Association Office if you do not know the member number.

Getting More From Your PSMA Membership
Posted: 2005-9-27
A letter to the Membership from Chuck Mullett, PSMA Chairman March 18, 2003

In a recent monthly teleconference of our Membership Committee we had a lively discussion about how we are serving our membership, what projects we are doing, and how we might communicate better with you, our member companies. Realizing that communication is always a key ingredient, I volunteered to write to you and give you a personal snapshot of what’s going on.

Mission: To integrate the resources of the power sources industry to more effectively and profitably serve the needs of the power sources users, providers and PSMA members.

As it is with many trade organizations, membership can be a spectator sport. The organization appreciates your support in the form of dues, because there’s always overhead that must be paid. But, what good is an organization that simply collects dues, pays the phone bills and mailing costs, and tries to survive until the next wave of dues submittals? Clearly, this would be a waste of time. In organizations like PSMA, the worth of the group is directly and totally a result of the efforts of its members. This is not a new concept. Service organizations around the world have always operated in just this way. Think about Rotary International, comprised of business leaders who volunteer their time in an environment of fellowship to help each other succeed in their businesses and help students with scholarships, etc. They take on meaningful projects in their communities, help their communities, and have fun doing it. It is possible to maintain membership in Rotary by simply paying dues and attending meetings. But---it is clear that those who get the most out of their membership are the ones who get involved in the projects. They get to know the other members, gaining friendships and insight into their own businesses. In addition, and perhaps most importantly, they have a lot of fun. When people ask us about PSMA, we usually recite a couple of sentences about the organization, its membership and mission, and then we’re bragging joyfully about the projects recently completed and the ones in process. For me, personally, the projects are exciting, as they give me valuable insight It has become a tradition over the past few years to make use of the Saturday preceding APEC (usually in late February or early March) to hold a major workshop, taking advantage of the presence of the leaders of the power electronics industry. Two years ago Lou Pechi culminated the work of his Low Voltage Workshop team in an all-day meeting that resulted in the book that’s probably on you bookshelf. Leaders from several end users and power supply manufacturing companies spent countless hours preparing papers and presentations, and then more volunteers transcribed the workshop and edited the final report. If you’re involved in the move toward lower voltage power delivery, I hope you’ve had a chance to use it. Last year that pre-APEC Saturday was spent in PSMA’s Integration Workshop, organized by Arnold Alderman. We hope this project saved many of our member companies tens of thousands of dollars trying to figure out how to advance their power supply technology by the use of semi-custom or fully-custom ICs. The question, “Should I go into the silicon design business, joint venture with a semiconductor manufacturer or simply wait for the next wave of ICs” can be difficult to answer. Your Association decided that tackling this question rigorously and publishing the answers would be of considerable value to the membership. We enlisted the help of our colleagues in Ireland, PEI Technologies, after a bidding process involving several candidate organizations. Both volumes of this report have been sent to PSMA Regular and Associate member companies as a benefit of membership. This study cost under $35,000, because of the hundreds of volunteer hours spent by several PSMA members. Prior to this, we had spent well over a year and around $40,000 on the Status of Power Electronics Packaging (StatPEP) project, also using the crew in Ireland to analyze ten dc-dc converters and ten 500-watt ac-dc power supplies. They dissected these units after a battery of electrical measurements, took countless photos and x-rays, and reported the findings in the now-famous “StatPEP Report” that we hope is in your possession and has been of benefit to your company. Again, hundreds of hours were spent by PSMA volunteers overseeing the PEI work, writing papers, presenting them at the workshop and also presenting a half-day summary seminar at APEC 2000. We have now held the fourth Power Technology Roadmap Workshop, which took place on the Saturday preceding APEC 2003 in February. Don Staffiere started this triennial study in 1994 and faithfully repeated it in 1997 and 2000. It involves heavy effort of over 20 volunteers, not only from PSMA but also from other companies. The final product will be a comprehensive publication containing trending of all aspects of power electronics technology---design, manufacturing, components technology, marketing, sales and in-depth information from the users about their needs over the next five years. This exercise will be done without any outside contracts, except the printing of the reports. So---what else has PSMA done for me? Well, let me introduce you to the PSMA Web site! It’s hard to believe, but it consistently receives over 16,000 hits per month! If you supplied the requested information, there’s a link to your Web site, and your company name scrolls by continuously on the home page. Please, if you haven’t done so, drop by and give your mouse a little exercise---you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Be sure to look at the quarterly newsletter, UPDATE. The current edition goes on for 18 pages; including many APEC 2003 pictures and scenes of your PSMA team at work (Joe Horzepa has one of those wonderful digital cameras with the cheap film!) What MORE can PSMA do for me? Plenty! We’re strong, eager and capable. Over half of the sales revenue of the power supply manufacturers in the US is represented in PSMA’s membership. Membership from the components community is also very strong, and so is our membership from academia and leading consultants. As one of the three sponsors of APEC, we share in the financial outcome of the conference, and it’s been very positive over the past few years. Our financial net worth is over $70,000. As a non-profit organization, we simply return our revenues from APEC, member dues and publication sales, to our membership as efficiently and effectively as we can. In addition to the present system of value exchange here’s how you can “milk” much more out of your membership. I thought I would make a list, but as the thoughts rolled around in my head, I realized they all comprised a single theme. It’s extremely simple. “Get involved.” I can tell you, and so can my colleagues, that the benefits from being truly active in an organization like PSMA far outstrip all of the many publications that attempt to summarize its activities. There’s much more in store for you than simply hearing what goes on in our committee meetings, workshops and research projects. What happens in these activities is (and I’ll be the first to admit it doesn’t happen all the time) almost magical. After many years of sticking my neck out and getting involved in these activities I’ve come to some revelations. As I wrote in my paper for APEC 2000 about “Defining your own excellence,” these volunteer organizations have an unusually high population density of effective people. It’s partly because the volunteer aspect acts as an input filter---everyone had to exercise some initiative to be there in the first place. 1. They had to “show up” (it’s been written that this is 80% of success). 2. They had to say, “I’ll do that,” when the discussion rolled around to figuring out how to organize the project. 3. They had to deliver. The level of performance is extremely high, because the people are “turned on” about what they’re doing. Some valuable friendships are formed while working together on these projects. As many of them involve research about power supply technology, components, reliability, marketing and sales, this work may uncover valuable information that you might otherwise not find. More important than the content of the work, in my opinion, is the interaction with exciting colleagues who are really enjoying their careers. I can’t tell you how many times my life has been enriched by these experiences. One of the reasons I’m taking the time to write this is to share this with you. I hope you’ll accept my invitation to get involved yourself. I hope, even more, that you will pick one or two of your co-workers to get involved with us. Please pick up your phone and call me at my office in California, 805 933-4607, or drop an email to me at chuck.mullett@onsemi.com. We can chat further about how your membership in PSMA can become much more valuable to you and your company. Sincerely, Chuck Mullett Chairman, PSMA

An Engineer's Guide to using Google by Chuck Mullett
Posted: 2005-8-23

Years ago we had to surround ourselves with printed reference material to provide the data on components used in our designs and applications papers to help in their use. Many of these were free, but some others cost over $100 each and became obsolete almost as fast as we obtained them. Today, the picture has changed dramatically. Most of this information is available at no cost through the Internet; the amount of information is so huge that the new challenge is sorting it out. When the semiconductor committee of PSMA began to study the problem of helping engineers find the information needed, the change in the way we do our jobs became blatantly obvious. Even this task has been made easier, because of help from the Internet.

Here is our conclusion: Google is perhaps the most advanced search engine in the world at this time. Surprisingly, it’s not just for lay people who are looking for new recipes or ways to remodel their bedrooms. Its capability to provide us with the sophisticated technical help we need is astounding. It has the capacity to improve its performance, on its own, as it is used. Our job in helping our members and others in the industry has been reduced from one of searching, rating and cataloging materials to one of simply providing a few hints about using Google. We suggest you try it for yourself, get familiar with its capability, and use it the next time you need information. Here are some examples for you to try:

1. Go to Google.com and type in power factor correction. Our result was that 2,190,000 references were retrieved in 0.23 seconds. Now, type in “power factor correction” and see the difference. We got 155,000 references in about the same amount of time. What is even more amazing is that the references were valid! Even in the first case---we looked through the first 120 on the list, and didn’t find even one irrelevant citing.

2. Try “mag amp” and retrieve 8,870 references. All were valid until we got down to the 29th one on the list, which referred to a slow-release garden fertilizer. 28 out of 29 is a validity score of 96.6%---not bad for software!!!

In Example 1 we saw the difference of enclosing the phrase in quotation marks. Doing so causes the search engine to look for precisely that phrase. Without this, the search engine will find hits on each of the words individually, inviting irrelevant references.

To the right of the search window on the home page you will find “Advanced Search.” Clicking on it will produce a page full of easy-to-use tricks to improve the search, including “Advanced Search Tips” on the top line of the page. This gives even more useful information to produce more effective results. Google is so easy that if you’ll spend only 5 minutes with it, you’ll be producing better results than you can find in a world-class library, without leaving your desk. Try it first, then try other search engines. We did this, and found a plethora of irrelevant “hits.” We invite your comments.

Power Supplies - Make vs Buy
Posted: 2003-1-24

A discussion of criteria to consider when deciding whether you should make or buy power supplies when creating equipment.

Power Supplies - Make vs Buy



Technical Writing Guides
Posted: 2003-1-24

The following documents are provided to assist you in your technical writing. Please note that if you would like a hard copy of the Units, Symbols & Styles Guide in a handy one-page format, you may purchase copies in the Publications Section.

Units, Symbols and Style Guide

A Brief Writing Guide

Site Design: David Fogle Design

Contact us:   Tel: (973) 543-9660   Fax: (973) 543-6207   power@psma.com
P.O. Box 418, Mendham, NJ 07945-0418
© 2018Power Sources Manufacturers Association.