Simple negative-reference voltage generators

Saab, Alfredo H.; Logan, Steve
January 2006
Portable Design;Jan2006, Vol. 12 Issue 1, p26
This article focuses on the working of a simple negative-reference voltage generator. Low-voltage systems often require a standard switching-regulator integrated circuit (IC) to operate below their normal operating ranges. The limitation in this mode of operation is the equilibrium voltage at the IC's feedback point, which is usually the minimum output voltage to which the regulator can be adjusted. On the other hand, a negative reference enables one to set the output to a voltage lower than the feedback set-point. Inverting charge pumps have rectification efficiency very close to unity. The efficiency is constant from the pump's minimum startup value to the maximum-rated input voltage. The output resistance of the charge-pump IC is not very important because the demand for output current from a reference circuit is usually very low. The circuit uses a precision-matched resistor-divider to improve performance/cost ratio. However, other similar devices or discrete resistors are also suitable for the purpose.


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