What is Clamping Voltage of an eFuse IC?

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Editorial Team - everything PE

Jun 28, 2024

The clamping voltage or overvoltage clamp value (OVC) of an eFuse IC is the maximum voltage that the eFuse IC permits to reach the load during an overvoltage event. This voltage acts as a protective threshold. When the input voltage exceeds the OVC, the eFuse will either limit the voltage to this maximum level or cut off the current to protect downstream components from damage.

The clamping voltage or OVC is a safety feature of an eFuse that provides a means for overvoltage protection in two ways:

  • By clamping the output voltage
  • By shutting off the output voltage

UVLO - Undervoltage Lockout

The specific type of overvoltage protection used depends on the particular eFuse IC model and will be mentioned in the product datasheet.

Benefits of Overvoltage Clamping Function in eFuse ICs

  • Protection Against Overvoltage: When the input voltage exceeds a predefined threshold, the eFuse's internal clamping circuitry activates to limit the output voltage to a safe level, typically around 15V. This prevents the overvoltage from reaching the load or downstream circuits, thereby protecting them from damage.
  • Comprehensive Circuit Protection: The overvoltage clamping function works in coordination with other protection mechanisms, such as overcurrent limiting, thermal shutdown, undervoltage lockout, and soft-start, to provide comprehensive safeguarding against a wide range of fault conditions.
  • Improved System Reliability: By actively clamping the output voltage during overvoltage events, eFuse ICs enhance the overall reliability of the system and prevent malfunctions caused by abnormal voltages.
  • Reduced Maintenance: Unlike traditional fuses that need to be physically replaced after tripping, eFuse ICs can automatically reset after an overvoltage event, reducing maintenance requirements.
  • Flexible Application Design: The overvoltage clamping function, along with other protection features, allows designers to use eFuse ICs in a wide range of applications requiring robust circuit protection, such as HDD/SSD arrays, servers, industrial equipment, and devices with external power adapters.

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