GaN Systems FETs Inside Dell's Gaming Laptop Charger


GaN Systems has announced that the 240 W AC charger in the Dell Alienware X15 R1 gaming laptop features GaN Systems' high-quality transistors. Gaming computers continue to amaze with the combination of incredible performance and breathtakingly elegant design.

A case in point is the new Dell Alienware X15 R1, its thinnest 15 ″ high-performance gaming laptop. Features include 11th Gen Intel Core i7 11800H processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 6 GB GDDR6 video card, 16 GB DDR4, 3200 MHz memory, and 512 GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD.

Elegant computers are often accompanied with clunky power chargers. Now, Dell has addressed the issue with Alienware’s first small form factor power charger. The design is just as breathtakingly elegant as the computer that it pairs with. It’s smaller, lighter, and sleeker than all previous models on the market – about one-half the size and 25 % lighter.

In fact, the new Dell Alienware 240 W charger is nearly the same size as the old 90 W chargers, but with 2.7x more power packed into the same volume.

How Did Dell Do It?

In a recent teardown report, the new 240 W charger (LA240PM200) is compared to a Dell 90 W charger (LA90PM130). The report finds that the 240 W charger uses GaN Systems power transistors to provide significant improvements in power with an output of 240 W in a 152 x 78 x 23 mm case, which is a similar size to Dell’s 90 W power charger.

The report reveals how designers took advantage of the properties of GaN Systems power transistors. Fast switching of GaN transistors is the key technological advancement that leads to major improvements in the charger design. First, the high frequency switching of GaN leads to smaller components like capacitors, inductors, and transformers. Second, the fast switching of GaN results in lower power loss meaning that there is less heat generated. Combined, these two benefits allow designers to make the charger much smaller and lighter.

The 240 W power charger supports the PD2.0 fast charge protocol and has two voltage levels of 5 V / 1.5 A and 20 V / 3.25 A. The charger uses GaN SystemsGS-065-030-2-L, 650 V, 30 A, 50 mΩ, E-mode GaN transistor. Enclosed in a small, thermally efficient 8 × 8 mm PDFN package, the transistor can be switched at high frequency for maximum efficiency and power density. This combination of performance and cost-effectiveness makes it ideal for consumer electronics applications.

“The world is benefiting from the use of GaN,” said Jim Witham, CEO of GaN Systems. “In many cases, like in data centers, factories, renewable solar energy systems, and electric vehicles, the consumer doesn’t always know that using GaN means using fewer materials and less energy. But with computer and phone chargers, we can all see the benefit immediately. Lighter backpacks, briefcases, purses, along with smaller chargers that fit in tight spaces are all welcomed benefits. More importantly, given that GaN chargers are more efficient than legacy silicon transistor-based chargers, we are doing our part in conserving resources, increasing sustainability, and making the world a better place. The rapid growth of GaN is great to witness.”

Click here to view the teardown report of the Dell 240 W charger LA240PM200.

Click here to learn more about GaN Systems.