Rad hard 32-channel driver with integrated decoder for satellite

March 02, 2017 //By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Intersil Corporation has introduced a radiation hardened 32-channel driver with integrated decoder that reduces the size, weight and power (SWaP) of satellite command and telemetry systems.

The ISL72813SEH claims to be the first high current driver to integrate the decoder, level shifter and driver array in a single monolithic IC, allowing satellite manufacturers to significantly increase system capacity and reduce solution size by up to 50%. The device offers a 4x higher density channel count compared to the nearest competitor, and the integrated level shifter eliminates several peripheral components.

The ISL72813SEH driver leverages Intersil’s proprietary silicon on insulator process, which provides single-event latch-up (SEL) robustness in heavy ion environments. The driver’s integrated decoder interfaces directly to the general purpose I/Os of FPGAs and CPUs in the satellite’s flight computer, dramatically reducing pin count compared to competitive 1-input to 1-output driver arrays. Each of the device’s 32-channels of common-emitter open-collector driver outputs can generate pulses of up to 42 V and 600 mA.

The driver addresses latching relay and solenoid commanding for most satellite control functions, including redundancy management, mechanism drive enables, propulsion component relays and enables, battery management, and payload switch control. Its low VCE saturation levels eliminate a major customer concern by reducing the overhead voltage required to drive the load. The driver’s power efficiency and high integration reduces the amount of circuitry required on the bus, allowing customers to add more spacecraft functionality and processing power.