Due to the commercialization of high-brightness LEDs and the continuous decline in the unit price of LEDs, LEDs have rapidly entered the field of multi-applications, making LED terminal products develop more rapidly. Among them, the important role is the LED driver IC that can drive LEDs. This article will introduce the current market demand for LED driver ICs and the latest developments of related manufacturers.
LED, the principle of its light, is simply the process of converting electrical energy into light. The current is passed through the compound semiconductor, and the combination of electrons and holes is transmitted. The excess energy is released in the form of light to achieve the effect of illuminating. The higher the forward current through the LED, the higher the brightness, and at the same time, the current stability will affect the LED illumination stability. Therefore, LED driver ICs that provide accurate current have become the mainstream in the market.
The characteristic requirement of the LED driver IC is the consistency and constancy of the current output. The LED driver IC needs to control one or more LEDs. The brightness of the LED is approximately linearly proportional to the amount of current passing through it. Therefore, in order for the LED to emit the same brightness, the amount of LED current connected must be kept the same. Since slight changes in current will affect brightness, this will be unacceptable for many applications of LEDs.
In addition, the LED itself may still be inefficient due to problems such as temperature or time of use, so the LED driver IC itself must be designed to effectively detect the internal error of the LED. Since the process of epitaxial growth of the manufacturer may cause a difference in the LED dies, the way in which the digital code can be changed by the LED driving IC can obtain a relative output current and adjust the deviation of the current.
The LED driver IC can use PWM signal control technology to perform dimming control, and maintain stable LED illumination brightness, effectively extending battery life.
LED driver IC market demand
The market demand for LED driver ICs is classified into three categories according to the application, namely, consumer electronics, automotive lighting, and architectural decoration and home lighting. The application characteristics of consumer electronic products are battery-based energy, generally 4.2 to 8.4V, so low-voltage, low-current LED driver ICs are the most suitable products with a large amount of demand. In terms of automotive lighting products, since the power supply is from a car battery, it is generally 48V, so a higher voltage step-down LED driver IC is required. As for architectural decorative lighting and home lighting, it is necessary to convert the AC power directly into a DC power LED driver IC, that is, convert the AC power into a DC power source, and at the same time complete the matching with the LED voltage and current. Therefore, LED driver ICs for different applications will be completely different.
In terms of market demand, automotive lighting uses a large number of LEDs, most of which are series and parallel drives, requiring higher voltages, which is very convenient for the power supply of 48V car batteries. At present, new LED driver ICs capable of withstanding 60V high voltage have become more common. The market for LED dashboard backlights, front and rear fog lamps, third x-lights, directional lights, and taillights is very promising in the automotive front-loading market.
Building decoration and home lighting require LED driver ICs that convert AC power directly into DC DC power supplies. Currently, there is no single SoC integrated circuit product, most of which are modules. Architectural decorative lighting has been widely used in many cities and has excellent energy saving effects. In the future, the demand for household LED lighting will be very large. However, there is still a long way to go before mass production of household LED lighting technology and production costs.
As for LED driver ICs for consumer electronics, there are more mature technologies, products and relatively mature cities.
Due to the diversification of LED applications, LED driver IC manufacturers must also design according to different products. Due to the diversification of downstream customers, the layout strategy of manufacturers will also affect the long-term development in the future. LED driver IC mainly controls current through LED, emphasizes stability and low power consumption in design, emphasizes debugging function, and often uses PWM (pulse width modulation) technology to control LED dimming, so it is similar to analog IC technology. Where. However, the growth of the LED industry is higher than that of the overall analog IC industry, and the penetration rate of LED backlight applications is rapidly increasing, making the future growth of LED driver ICs very optimistic. At present, the LED driver IC market is mostly foreign merchants. China's LED driver IC manufacturers are in their infancy. In addition to the deeper ink in large billboards, there will be more room for growth in the mobile phone, consumer electronics and NB backlight markets in the future.
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