Maxim Integrated Patent Grants

Electrical transformer open and short detector

Granted: April 18, 2017
Patent Number: 9625514
A circuit for monitoring the health of the transformers is disclosed. In an implementation, the circuit includes a transformer that provides an input signal and a pulse generator that generates a pulse signal. An analog-to-digital converter receives a combined signal that includes the input signal and the pulse signal, and the analog-to-digital converter converts the combined signal to a digital representation of the combined signal. The circuit includes a first digital filter and a…

Integrated circuit package having surface-mount blocking elements

Granted: April 11, 2017
Patent Number: 9620462
A first cavity-down ball grid array (BGA) package includes a substrate member and an array of bond balls. The array of bond balls includes a pair of parallel extending rows of outer mesh bond balls and a row of inner signal bond balls that is parallel to the pair of rows of outer mesh bond balls. A surface-mount blocking element is disposed between the row of inner signal bond balls and the pair of rows of outer mesh bond balls. The surface-mount blocking element is either a passive or…

Systems and methods for authentication based on physically unclonable functions

Granted: April 11, 2017
Patent Number: 9621359
Presented are systems, devices, and methods for reliably authenticating asymmetric cryptography-based ICs based on Physically Unclonable Functions (PUFs) that are immune to reverse engineering. Various embodiments of the invention enhance the level of security in IC architectures without the need to connect to a remote certification authority, thereby, eliminating shortfalls associated with online authentication. Certain embodiments accomplish this by using a PUF-generated secure private…

Semiconductor device having trench capacitor structure integrated therein

Granted: March 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9608130
Semiconductor devices are described that include a capacitor integrated therein. In an implementation, the semiconductor devices include a substrate. The substrate includes multiple capacitor regions, such as a first capacitor region and a second capacitor region that are adjacent to one another. Each capacitor region includes trenches that are formed within the substrate. A metal-insulator-metal capacitor is formed within the trenches and at least partially over the substrate. The…

Soft start systems and methods for multi-stage step-up converters

Granted: March 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9608512
A control circuit for a step-up converter includes a soft start module configured to control states of N transistor pairs of the step-up converter, where N is an integer greater than two. A driver module is in communication with the soft start module and configured to generate a first signal when N transistor pairs of the step-up converter are ready to switch. A first charging circuit is configured to charge (N?1) capacitors of the step-up converter to an input voltage of the step-up…

System and method to eliminate transition losses in DC/DC converters

Granted: March 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9608517
Various embodiments of the invention reduce switching losses associated with existing non-zero volt switching and non-zero current switching in DC/DC converters without the need for a resonant design. Certain embodiments of the invention provide for improved efficiency by reducing switching losses related to the simultaneous presence of current and voltage across high power switching devices. In certain embodiments, this is accomplished by adding a relatively small inductor and two…

Integrated circuit with precision current source

Granted: March 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9608626
An integrated circuit with precision current source includes a first MOSFET, a second MOSFET, an op-amp and a resistor formed on a common semiconductor substrate. The first MOSFET is characterized by a first multiplier (×M1) and the second MOSFET is characterized by a second multiplier (×M2) where a ratio of ×M2 to ×M1 is greater than one. An inverting input of the op-amp is coupled to a drain of the first MOSFET and an output of the op-amp is coupled to a gate of the first MOSFET. A…

Digital input circuit and method for high voltage sensors

Granted: March 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9608635
A digital input circuit includes a series connection of a current limiter and a switch having a switch control input coupled between a signal input and ground, and a logic level shifter coupled to the signal input and having a switch control output coupled to the switch control input and a signal output, where a maximum amplitude at the signal input is greater than a maximum amplitude at the signal output. A digital input method includes coupling an input signal to ground with a current…

Integrated touchless joystick-type controller

Granted: February 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9582078
Techniques are described to furnish a touchless joystick-type controller in a portable electronic device. The techniques may be implemented within an electronic device that comprises one or more sensors configured to detect a target at a distance from the sensor and provide a signal in response thereto. The signal is received in response to the sensor detecting a target within a field of view of the sensor. A position of the target relative to a point of reference is then determined…

Transfer triggered microcontroller with orthogonal instruction set

Granted: February 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9582283
A microcontroller includes a program memory, data memory, central processing unit, at least one register module, a memory management unit, and a transport network. Instructions are executed in one clock cycle via an instruction word. The instruction word indicates the source module from which data is to be retrieved and the destination module to which data is to be stored. The address/data capability of an instruction word may be extended via a prefix module. If an operation is performed…

Solder fatigue arrest for wafer level package

Granted: February 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9583425
A wafer level package includes a wafer, a lead disposed of the wafer for connecting the wafer to an electrical circuit, and a core disposed of the lead. In some embodiments, the lead disposed of the wafer is a copper pillar, and the core is plated onto the copper pillar. In some embodiments, the core is polymer screen-plated onto the lead. In some embodiments, the core extends between at least approximately thirty-five micrometers (35 ?m) and fifty micrometers (50 ?m) from the lead. In…

Adaptive phase delay adjustment for MEMS sensors

Granted: February 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9575089
Various embodiments of the invention allow to cancel demodulation phase error. In certain embodiments, cancellation is accomplished by determining the phase delay of a drive front end signal that is in phase with an undesired signal and digitally adjusting the demodulation signal with a calibrated signal. The phase delay may be adaptively compensated during regular circuit operation, only at predetermined times, or during a factory calibration.

Systems and methods to monitor current in switching converters

Granted: February 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9575096
Various embodiments of the invention increase current monitoring accuracy in switching converters. In particular, certain embodiments of the invention allow reduce noise associated with transients that are typically generated at transitions when power FETs are turn on and off and allow to accurately sense inductor DC current of switching converters, thereby, increase current monitoring accuracy without requiring any blanking circuitry. In certain embodiments of the invention, this is…

Systems and methods for low power time-domain measurement of complex impedance

Granted: February 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9575105
Various embodiments of the invention enable low-power accurate measurement of complex impedance at a range of frequencies of interest to determine a frequency response of a test sample. The system requires only a few external precision components that are not integrated into a microprocessor, thereby, providing a low-cost alternative to existing designs. In certain embodiments, low-power operation is accomplished by utilizing a simplified digital signal processing scheme that requires…

Adaptive dead time control

Granted: February 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9577525
A dead time detector detects when a dead time occurs in a switching regulator comprising a high-side switch and a low-side switch and generates an output signal based on a duration of the dead time. A first circuit generates a first turn-on signal to turn on the high-side switch and a first turn-off signal to turn off the low-side switch based on the output signal in response to a first edge of a pulse width modulated pulse. A second circuit generates a second turn-on signal to turn on…

Group aware current-limited amplifier and system

Granted: February 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9571039
A group-aware, current limited amplifier system including a group brownout control bus and a number of current-limited amplification channels coupled to the group brownout control bus. In an example embodiment, each current-limited amplification channel includes an amplifier, an amplifier power supply developing a current level signal that represents the amount of current being drawn by the amplifier, a brownout controller responsive to a digital audio input, the group brownout control…

Semiconductor package device having passive energy components

Granted: February 7, 2017
Patent Number: 9564415
A semiconductor package device is disclosed that includes a passive energy component integrated therein. In an implementation, the semiconductor package device includes a semiconductor substrate having a first surface and a second surface. The semiconductor substrate includes one or more integrated circuits formed proximal to the first surface. The semiconductor package device also includes a passive energy component positioned over the second surface. The passive energy component is…

Hermetic solution for thermal and optical sensor-in-package

Granted: February 7, 2017
Patent Number: 9564569
A sensor-in-package device, a process for fabricating a hermetically-sealed sensor-in-package device, and a process for fabricating a hermetically-sealed sensor-in-package device with a pre-assembled hat that employ example techniques in accordance with the present disclosure are described herein. In an implementation, the sensor-in-package device includes a substrate; at least one thermopile, at least one photodetector, at least one light-emitting diode, an ultraviolet light sensor, and…

Ambient temperature measurement

Granted: January 31, 2017
Patent Number: 9557228
A temperature measuring device includes a heat plate exposed to the ambient, one or more sensor chips, and one or more device electronics that include a power transmitter, a wireless communication receiving block, and a processor. Each sensor chip includes a wireless communication transmitting block, a temperature sensor, a signal processing block, and an energy harvesting circuit. The heat plate and the sensor chips are positioned within an indent formed in an exposed surface of a…

Magnetic amplifier assisted LED constant current sink overhead voltage regulation

Granted: January 31, 2017
Patent Number: 9560705
A power circuit includes a plurality of LED strings, each LED string having multiple LEDs connected in series. A plurality of magnetic amplifiers, reset current sources, and a control circuit are used to drive each LED string with equal current and to independently regulate the amount of voltage supplied to each LED to maximize efficiency. One magnetic amplifier, one reset current source, and one current sink are dedicated to each LED string. The control circuit measures the voltage drop…