Novel Full Bridge Topologies for VRM Applications

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Ye, Sheng
VRM , Voltage Regulator Module
Multi-phase Buck is widely used in Voltage Regulator Modules design because of its low cost and simplicity. But this topology also has a lot of drawbacks. One of the most fundamental drawback is that it has narrow duty cycles when it operates at high switching frequency with low output voltage (for example 1V). Narrow duty cycles yield high switching loss which limits the switching frequency of Buck; making it difficult to design a Buck based VRM that can achieve high efficiency at a high switching frequency. In this thesis three new non-isolated full bridge topologies will be introduced to solve the aforementioned problems of Buck. One is a new non-isolated full bridge topology, this new topology use a transformer to extend the duty cycle and it capable to achieve zero voltage switching. Experimental results demonstrate that it has significant advantages over multi-phase Buck. In some applications when huge output current is required, several converters are paralleled to supply the current that is not an optimal solution. Two two-phase non-isolated full bridge topologies are proposed to solve this problem. They double the output power of one-phase non-isolated full bridge, and achieve higher efficiency with fewer switches compared with parallel two non-isolated full bridge converters. Non-isolated VRM usually is used for personal computers, VRM for servers is called power pod, and usually isolation is required for power pod due to safety considerations. Server usually require much more power than personal computers, their power consumption is around several KW. To provide the power for the server a few power modules will need to be paralleled, this kind solution is expensive and make current sharing complex. In this thesis two new two-phase isolated full bridge topologies are proposed. They are capable to operate at soft switching mode. And they double the output power compared with conventional full bridge converter. Compared with parallel two full bridge converters, they can achieve higher efficiency with fewer switches.
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