Micro Matters


Industry’s first zero-drift, nanopower amplifier combines ultra-high precision with the lowest power consumption

Published: 11 December 2017 - Sarah Mead

Texas Instruments (TI) (NASDAQ: TXN) today introduced the first operational amplifier (op amp) to combine ultra-high precision with the industry’s lowest supply current. With exceptional power-to-precision performance, the LPV821 zero-drift, nanopower op amp enables engineers to attain the highest DC precision, while consuming 60 percent less power than competitive zero-drift devices. The LPV821 is designed for use in precision applications such as wireless sensing nodes, home and factory automation equipment, and portable electronics. For more information, see www.TI.com/LPV821-pr-eu.

The LPV821 op amp is the newest device in TI’s low-power amplifier portfolio, which enables engineers to design lighter, smaller and more portable applications with lower-capacity batteries and longer system lifetimes.

Key features and benefits of the LPV821 op amp

·      Exceptional power-to-precision performance: Consuming only nanoamps of supply current, while providing the high-precision benefits of optimized offset, drift and 1/f noise (flicker noise), the LPV821 is extremely beneficial for applications where both precision and low power are essential system needs, including industrial gas detectors, field transmitters and battery packs.

·      Sixty percent lower power consumption: With best-in-class supply current of 650 nA, the LPV821 extends battery lifetimes and enables lower power budgets in precision systems than competitive zero-drift devices.

·      High DC precision: TI’s zero-drift technology delivers a low initial offset of 10 µV and an offset drift of 0.02 µV/°C, eliminating temperature drift and flicker noise, and enabling engineers to attain the highest DC precision and dynamic error correction. Additionally, self-calibration technology helps engineers save system development cost and speed time to market.

·      No duty cycling: Nanopower consumption enables always-on applications such as continuous and blood glucose monitoring, and other electrochemical cell applications. Additionally, the low supply current decreases the external circuitry required to turn the amplifier on and off.

·      High-impedance sensor operation: An input bias current of 7 pA and low flicker noise at 3.9 µVp-p enables operation with high-impedance sensors, delivering more accurate measurements in precision systems.

Engineers can pair the LPV821 op amp with the TLV3691 nanopower comparator or ADS7142 nanopower analog-to-digital converter (ADC) to program a threshold that will automatically wake up a microcontroller (MCU) such as the CC1310 SimpleLink™ Sub-1 GHz MCU, further reducing system power consumption.

Tools and support to speed design

Designers can download the TINA-TI™ SPICE model to simulate their designs and predict circuit behavior when using the LPV821 op amp. Engineers can also jump-start gas-sensing system designs using the LPV821 op amp with the Always-On Low-Power Gas Sensing with 10+ Year Coin Cell Battery Life Reference Design and Micropower Electrochemical Gas Sensor Amplifier Reference Design.

Package, availability and pricing

Pre-production samples of the LPV821 op amp are now available through the TI store and authorized distributors in a 5-pin small-outline transistor (SOT-23) package. Pricing starts at US$0.80 in 1,000-unit quantities.

Learn more from TI’s amplifier experts

·      Download the LPV821 op amp datasheet.

·      Learn how to make precision measurements on a nanopower budget in this Analog Wire blog post.

·      Read about designing on a nanopower budget in these TI TechNotes:

o   “Current Sensing in No-Neutral Light Switches.”

o   “Advantages of Using Nanopower, Zero-Drift Amplifiers for Battery Voltage and Current Monitoring in Portable Applications.”

o   “Simplifying Measurements in Power-Conscious Industrial Analytics Systems with Nanopower Op Amps.”

·      Learn more about TI’s zero-drift technology.

·      Check out all of TI’s amplifier devices.

·      Search for solutions and engage with fellow engineers and TI experts in the TI E2E™ Community Amplifiers forum.

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