IC's diverse technology ensures industry's smallest footprint for designing large automotive displays

28 August 2018

Credit: Maxim Integrated
Credit: Maxim Integrated

Maxim's integrated circuit's combination of power supply, analogue supply voltage and LED backlight technology ensure that automotive infotainment designers can create larger HD displays with efficiency.

Named the MAX20069, the IC provides the industry’s first solution – integrating four I2C-controlled, 150mA LED backlight drivers and a four-output thin-film-transistor liquid-crystal display (TFT-LCD) bias in a single chip. The IC can reduce design footprint by up to one-third compared to the parts of Maxim’s closest competitor.

Automotive displays are already growing larger and more sophisticated, as vehicle manufacturers lure buyers with greater information and entertainment options. Market research suggests a 39 percent compound annual growth rate for the 8-inch display market in vehicle instrument clusters, centre stack and heads-up display systems.

Instrument clusters are expected to migrate to 12.3-inch displays soon; and as a result, automotive infotainment system designers will require power solutions with precision, flexibility and small overall solution size – to meet increasingly complex system requirements.

MAX20069 supports larger screen sizes and higher resolution by providing positive analogue supply voltage (PAVVD) and negative analogue supply voltage (NAVDD), both of which are required for low-temperature polysilicon panels (LTPS) that deliver higher resolution and lower cost than the amorphous silicon panels currently in use.

The IC also supports the high currents that next-generation displays require, with 150mA per channel in the four-channel LED driver for 8-inch or larger displays and higher resolutions. MAX20069 operates over the minus 40-degree Celsius to 105-degree Celsius ambient temperature range and is available in a 6mm x 6mm TQFN package.

Key advantages

High integration – Reduces design footprint, providing TFT-LCD bias with four rails, plus four 150mA LED backlight drivers.

- Single board supports panels from multiple manufacturers through a resistor or I2C-programmable sequencing to further reduce solution size

- Utilises 25 percent of the microcontroller (MCU) register bits versus closest competitor’s solution, eliminating the need for a more powerful and costlier MCU in display designs

Credit: Shutterstock
Credit: Shutterstock

Performance – Delivers twice the dimming ratio compared to the closest competitor’s offering, maintaining panel readability during transition to different light conditions; MAX20069 supports increased resolution through a 10,000:1 pulse-width modulation (PWM) dimming ratio at 200Hz

Safety and built-in diagnostics – An easy-to-use I2C interface quickly pinpoints problems, directing the MCU to adjust to conditions or alert the driver of a failure

Electromagnetic interference mitigation – 2.2MHz switching frequency, spread spectrum and phase-shift capabilities help mitigate interference and emissions


“Automakers are using displays to transform vehicle interiors into a futuristic digital user experience for instrument clusters, centre stacks, heads-up displays, eMirrors and other functions,” said Kevin Anderson, senior analyst, Power IC Research at IHS Markit.

“We forecast that shipments of automotive panels will increase by 12 percent this year to reach 165 million units. Maxim’s integrated TFT-LCD bias and LED backlight driver aligns with the growth trends in this category. Anything that helps designers to lower cost, save design space or enhance safety will draw interest.”

Said Szukang Hsien, executive business manager, Automotive Business Unit at Maxim Integrated, moreover: “Automotive manufacturers are using more screens, larger panels and brighter displays across several vehicle lines to support a safer and more engaging experience on the road.

“Maxim’s integrated LED backlight driver and TFT-LCD bias solution supports newer panel types to help automotive manufacturers adopt lower cost – yet higher resolution  panels with smaller solution size and a high level of integration.”

For more information, visit this link from Maxim Integrated: www.maximintegrated.com/products/MAX20069.

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