Maxim Unveils Continua Regulator Delivering Smallest Size and Tightest Accuracy for Supercapacitor Backup


Leading semiconductor solutions company, Maxim Integrated, has announced the release of Continua™ MAX38889 2.5V-to-5.5V, 3A reversible buck/boost regulator for system architects seeking backup power using supercapacitor or other energy sources and deliver the best combination of highest efficiency and smallest size. The latest addition to Maxim's Continua™ family of backup regulators deliver the industry's tightest output regulation of 2.5 percent to support critical applications that demand high accuracy.

The MAX38889 features 94 percent peak efficiency, 9 percent higher than the closest competitive solution, allowing it to support longer backup time. Additionally, at one-third the size, it enables easier integration into space-constrained designs. In applications such as smart utility meters or automotive dashboard cameras, the Continua™ MAX38889 regulator operates in buck mode to charge a backup power source, such as a supercapacitor. When main power goes away, the regulator reverses direction automatically, boosting the supercapacitor voltage to power the system, until main power is restored.

For convenient adoption, the entire MAX38889 solution is 64 percent smaller than the closest competitor (218mm2 vs. 606mm2), allowing designers to reduce component count, cut board space and save BOM cost. Smaller size also makes it easier to integrate into new and existing designs with tight space constraints. The MAX38889 regulates backup power for a wide range of both portable and non-portable applications, such as retail price scanners and surveillance cameras, and others used in home, building, automotive, industrial automation and healthcare IoT.

Key Advantages

  • Highest Efficiency: 94 percent peak efficiency is 9 percent higher than closest competitor
  • Smallest Size: One-third the size of the closest competitive solution
  • Tightest Regulation: Delivers 2.5 percent voltage regulation demanded by 5V applications

"Maxim's Continua family of backup voltage regulators uses advanced switching regulator design to deliver bi-directional buck/boost featuring tight output regulation that minimizes space while increasing power efficiency," said Anil Telikepalli, managing director of the Core Products Group at Maxim Integrated. "This is the third product from our Continua line as Maxim strives to enable always-on applications by solving the design engineer's toughest backup power challenges."

Availability and Pricing

The MAX38889 is available at Maxim Integrated's website for $2.36 (1000-up, FOB USA); also available from authorized distributors. The MAX38889EVKIT evaluation kit is available for $63. EE-Sim® models are also available.