# Buck boost and inductor calculations

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by ke5nnt, Apr 5, 2011.

1. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
I have tried and tried to find the answer to this myself, but I submit to defeat. I'm working with a DC/DC Step-up/Down/Inverting Switching Regulator, the NCP3064 in a step-up configuration. My goal is a voltage input of ~11 to 14V DC with an output of 19.2V at 350mA (can be over 19.2V but not under).

There is a very handy design tool for the NCP3064 which is an Excel spreadsheet that does calculations for you, found HERE. In this design tool under the "Boost" tab, Section 3 specifies Set ΔIL/IL(avg), then it specifies "it is suggested that ΔIL be chosen to be less than 10% of the average inductor current, IL(avg)."

I am quite confused on this point. What is ΔIL? and where can it be found on a datasheet for an inductor? I have looked at a number of inductor spreadsheets in an effort to find these values (ΔIL and IL(avg)). I have found Idc (DC Current) and Isat (saturation current), as well as Irms which I'm not sure what that means exactly, I think it's root mean square current.

Biggest problem I'm having is how to determine the ripple current of a given inductor? Perhaps the ΔIL/IL(avg) is just the tolerance of the inductor?

2. ### mik3 Senior Member

Feb 4, 2008
4,846
67
ΔIL is the ripple current through the inductor which is superimposed in ILavg. When they say that ΔIL has to be less than 10% of ILavg, it means that if the average current through the inductor is 1A, then ΔIL<=0.1A.

Now, Idc specifies the maximum DC current though the inductor.

Idc=ILavg+ΔIL/2

Irms is the root mean square current and it determines the power dissipated in the inductor. If ΔIL is small, like in your case, you can assume that Irms=Iavg.

3. ### SgtWookie Expert

Jul 17, 2007
22,194
1,761
ΔIL is the change of inductor current. You won't find it on a datasheet, because it's a function of your switching frequency, inductor uH, and how much current your output is.
As the switching frequency increases, the ΔIL decreases.
As the current increases, the ΔIL increases.
Increase the size of the inductor in uH, and the ΔIL decreases.

There is no spreadsheet for the NCP3064 in particular, but there are for NCP3063, NCP3065, and several others.

4. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
Ok, first, thank you for the responses. I have 3 more questions now which should help shine more light on this for me...

1. How do you determine what the best switching frequency is? Without external components, it should be between 50kHz and 150kHz but I'm not sure where even to start on that.

2. Assuming the spreadsheet for the NCP3063 is relevant to the 3064, back in the section 3 slot for ΔIL/IL(avg) where the units is a %, this is a value I'm supposed to fill in, but I'm not sure how to determine which value to put. Is it completely up to me? Inductor datasheets are much shorter than I'm used to, I'm not sure what information on them is important for this, if any.

3. In searching for an inductor, what is the best way to determine what the max DC current value should be? Should I want to keep close to the actual load that the buck boost is supplying (~300mA) in an effort to keep the physical size of the inductor down (somewhat important) or should I shoot for the max load of the buck boost (1.5A)?

Thanks

5. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
In addition to the questions above (and I hate to bump a thread but this one is getting lost)...

On the .xls worksheet, I have entered the following, please tell me if I'm doing this properly:

Design Parameters
VIN 11V
Vout 20V
Iout 0.35A

Input Conduction Loss Parameters
Vf 0.5V (diode forward voltage of Schottky Diode
VSAT (a parameter that is calculated by the .xls) given at 1.4V

Set ΔIL/IL(avg)
ΔIL / IL(avg) 10% (based on the given Iripple value of 0.07A and the Inductor Irms value given of 0.7A. 0.07A / 0.70A = 0.1 or 10%
Iripple is a given value at 0.07A (I assume a ripple current of 70mA?)

Input Target Frequency
Target F 150kHz

The Spreadsheet Calculates key Parameters for the Remaining Component Selection
Ton/Toff 0.99
Ton 3316nS
IL(avg) 0.70A
Ipk(switch) 0.73A
RSC 133mOhm (minimum short circuit resistor value)
L 471uH (rounded to closest available inductor value of 470uH
Rl (Inductor winding resistance from datasheet) 0.850Ω
Toff 3μS
Duty Cycle 50% (max duty cycle for the IC is 83%

Optimize Cout and Cin for Ripple Voltage
Cout 220μF
ESR (Output capacitor ESR) 160mOhm
Vripple(pk-pk) max 117mV
Vripple(pk-pk) min 29mV
Cin 100μF (based on ripple requirements)

Calculate Resistor Divider for Setting Vout
Vout 20V
R2 2.32kOhm
R1 34.8kOhm

Optimize Vout with standard R1 values
R1 (Pick nearest E96 1% R value for R1) 34.0kOhm
Vout 19.57V

Iterate CT to achieve desired target frequency
CT 2.2nF
Fcalc 150kHz

Efficiency is 83.42%

Have I done this correctly please? Also, the questions I asked in the post above are still important to me if anyone can answer those.

Thank you!

6. ### SgtWookie Expert

Jul 17, 2007
22,194
1,761
Generally, the higher your switching frequency, the less the value of inductance you'll need to achieve a given ΔIL/IL(avg). Being able to use a smaller inductor can save on space and cost. However, there may be more losses incurred in the switch itself during the transitions from on to off, or vice versa.

The smaller the % you fill in there, the larger value of inductance in uH you'll need. If you fill in a large % value, you risk burning up the switch due to excessive peak current, along with inductor saturation.

If you're going to err, then err on the side of caution. You don't want to be operating the inductor near 100% capacity continuously, as probably won't be very efficient, and might overheat on you.

It seems to me that we went 'round and 'round with a similar regulator to this one about 6 months ago, and I don't know if you ever got things resolved.

7. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
Yes Sir Sarge, you're correct. You are referring to This Thread. Rather than dig up an old thread I decided to start a new one, mostly because it's a different IC, even if it is just a newer version of the same. Also, some parameters of mine have changed and I'm able to get a bit more to the point on a new thread.

To answer your question, I never did get around to completing the project due mostly to life issues. I've been having a rough year. With that said though, I'm back on it again now which is why I'm digging up old issues. But I think this covers it and I'm pretty sure I've got it figured out now. Now that I have values I can work on selecting components, doing a schematic and working out a board layout. Then I just need to get me a protoboard built and I can give it a shot. Still plenty to do but the hard part is done.

I owe you and AAC a lot, your feedback is always great. Thanks for all the help!

8. ### SgtWookie Expert

Jul 17, 2007
22,194
1,761
As far as the inductor and the ΔIL / IL(avg), I'd go more around 20.8% which would lower your inductor requirement to 220uH. You'd have more ripple on the output, but how much of a big deal is that with you? The inductor you chose (470uH) would be operating at max DC current, which isn't good.

Here are a couple of 220uH inductors to look at:
Not small being toroidal, but comparatively low DC resistance.

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail...EpiMZZMsg%2by3WlYCkU7%2bI2Fr4H6Mu2zKNL1wbJA0=
That one's rated for 1.3A, so you have a comfortable margin of safety.
12.5 mm W x 12.5 mm L x 6 mm H - 1/2" square, under 1/4" high is pretty compact.

9. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
Aside from a larger (physical size) inductor, is there any adverse effect to staying with a lower ripple current and keeping inductance value at around 470uH? I realize the amp rating on the one I initially selected is lower than ideal, but there are 470uH inductors with larger current ratings. Found a 1.3A one that is about the same physical size ~12mm square. I'm just curious if there's an electrical trade-off between using lower inductance vs. higher ripple current?

10. ### SgtWookie Expert

Jul 17, 2007
22,194
1,761
With a smaller inductor you'll wind up with less overshoot, but more ripple.

You'd probably be OK with the 470uH 1.3A inductor. The original one you chose would not work very well I'm afraid.

11. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
I wanted to check the calculations on the NCV3063 xls design tool to make sure they came out correctly for the NCP3064.
I checked the design equations from both datasheets (3063 and 3064) and all of the equations are the same with the exception of one, the calculation for $V_{out}$. I haven't bothered with this calculation just yet so for the purposes of this post, let's ignore that.
I used all the same input values from the design tool spreadsheet for my "on paper" math. There are discrepancies so hopefully somebody will be able to tell me what's right.

From the spreadsheet:$\frac{T_{on}}{T_{off}}$ = 0.99

Calculation from the datasheet: $\frac{T_{on}}{T_{off}} = \frac{V_{out}+V_{f}-V_{in}}{V_{in}-{V_{SWCE}}$ where $V_{SWCE}$ is the Darlington Switch Collector to Emitter Voltage Drop from the 3064 datasheet. There may be some small error in the interpolation of the graph given. The Value I came up with was 0.8V. So...

$\frac{V_{out}+V_{f}-V_{in}}{V_{in}-{V_{SWCE}}$ = $\frac{20+0.5-11}{11-0.8} = 0.8873$ So, from the spreadsheet you get 0.99 and from the datasheet you get 0.8873.

************************************************************

From the spreadsheet: $I_{L(avg)} = 0.70A$

Calculation from the datasheet:$I_{L(avg)} = I_{out} (\frac{T_{on}}{T_{off}} +1) = 0.35(0.8873+1) = 0.35(1.8873) = 0.661A$

************************************************************

From the Spreadsheet: $I_{pk(switch)} = 0.73A$

Calculation from the datasheet: $I_{pk(switch)} = I_{L(avg)} + \frac{ΔI_{L}}{2} = 0.661 + \frac{0.07}{2} = 0.696A$ I guess the "Δ" symbol doesn't work in TEX. the ??$I_{L}$ should be ΔIL.

************************************************************

Finally, from the spreadsheet: $R_{SC} = 133mOhm$

Calculation from the datasheet: $R_{SC} = \frac{0.20}{I_{PK(Switch)}} = \frac{0.20}{0.696} = 0.287Ohm$

Ok, sorry for all the math, I guess I just don't know which values are correct. I'm pretty sure I did the math correctly, but I'm more inclined to believe the spreadsheet considering it was designed by the IC manufacturer. Still, doesn't make sense to me why the calculations given in the datasheet wouldn't match what's on the spreadsheet.

Thank you for the help!

12. ### Jony130 AAC Fanatic!

Feb 17, 2009
4,166
1,188
In spreadsheet they use $V_{SWCE} = 1.4V$ and you are using 0.8V.
But the simplest way is this

$D = 1 - \frac{Vin}{Vout} = 1 - \frac{11}{20} = 0.45$

$L_min = \frac{ton*Vin}{2*IL}$

And you can cheek your calculation in this site
http://schmidt-walter.eit.h-da.de/smps_e/smps_e.html#Aww
And also you have to remember that NCP3064 is not a classic PWM controller, The NCP3064 is a hysteric (PFM) controller. So this equation may not work in all cases.

13. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
That's an interesting site you linked to there. Thank you for that. I wonder just how accurate it is to the 3064.

14. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
I'm still having trouble deciding what component values to select since I'm getting different values depending on how I calculate them. So I have 2 questions.

1. I've never used SPICE before, is SPICE something that can simulate this circuit or not?

2. Will it matter much if my values vary a bit? As in, will it make a big difference if I just choose 1 set of values over the other? See my math-filled post above.

Thanks.

15. ### Jony130 AAC Fanatic!

Feb 17, 2009
4,166
1,188
The site is very helpful and quite accurate.
But you made the mistake you put L = 0.47H instate of 47μF = 47E-6
Well of course you can use SPICE for example LTspice

Witch values are different ??
Simply use this site
http://schmidt-walter.eit.h-da.de/smps_e/aww_smps_e.html
L_min = (3.12us *11V)/(2*0.35A) = 47μH/1A
The site propose 130μH so you could use 100uH/1A or 220uH/1A

16. ### SgtWookie Expert

Jul 17, 2007
22,194
1,761
He wanted to enter 470uH, which would be 470e-6 or .47e-3.

17. ### Jony130 AAC Fanatic!

Feb 17, 2009
4,166
1,188
And you should also remember that for L=47uH IL_min = 0.1A in CCM mode)
And for 470uH IL_min = 20mA

18. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
The values for certain components within the circuit. For example, Rsc from the spreadsheet is recommended to be 0.133 Ohm where the calculation from the device datasheet gives a value of 0.287 Ohm. Not sure which value to use.

The one thing I noticed that caught my eye when comparing the equations provided in the datasheets of the 3063 (of which the spreadsheet is based on) and the 3064 (which I am using) is the equation for $V_{out}$ is the only one that is different between the two devices.

For the NCV3063: $V_{out} = V_{TH}(\frac{R_{2}}{R_{1}}+1)$

For the NCV3064: $V_{out} = V_{TH}(\frac{R_{1}}{R_{2}}+1)$

As far as I can tell, $V_{TH}$ isn't even defined on the datasheet, so I'm not sure what value that is. Additionally, I'm sure the reversal of R1 and R2 in the equations would result in completely different values for selecting R1 and R2. You follow?

19. ### Jony130 AAC Fanatic!

Feb 17, 2009
4,166
1,188
Simply use 0.15Ω or 0.22Ω low inductance resistors.

As for for Vout and Vth
For for this diagram

$V_{out} = V_{TH}(1+\frac{R_{1}}{R_{2}})$

And for Vth look to the datasheet more carefully

20. ### ke5nnt Thread Starter Active Member

Mar 1, 2009
384
15
Oh wonderful! Can't believe I missed that, thank you!

Dang that works perfectly! $V_{TH}(\frac{R_{1}}{R_{2}}+1) = 1.25(\frac{34800}{2320}+1) = 20V$