Varying Types of DC-To-DC Converters

DC refers to Direct Current in which the flow of current is unidirectional. DC-to-DC switching converters are extensively used in the majority of portable devices and applications. Dc to dc step up converters are widely used because of their potential to yield a wide range of regulated supply voltages for various sub-blocks with the same system board efficiently.

Huge market potential

There is a huge market potential for DC-DC converters. The market is flooded with a wide array of such products offered by multiple suppliers. The converters are available in a range from minute packaged parts without any external elements to larger ones with multiple external parts for optimized functioning. One gets overwhelmed with the choices available, but choosing the right converter is important.

DC-to-DC conversion

When a DC-to-DC converter is in use, the voltage is acquired from a DC source and then converted to another DC voltage level. The converters are used to increase or decrease the voltage level. They are commonly used in portable chargers, portable DVD players, and automobiles.

 Every device demands a different voltage, and excessive power destroys the device. Similarly, an inadequate power supply will not help in running the device. Dc to dc step up converter acquires power from the battery and curtails the voltage level. For instance, to run a device efficiently, the voltage power of a battery of 24V has to be cut down to 12V.

Electronic conversion

DC-to-DC converters used in electronic circuits utilize switching technology. The switched-mode converter converts the DC voltage by temporarily storing the input energy and releasing it at varying voltage output. Magnetic field parts like inductor transformers or capacitors are used for storing energy. The electronic conversion method can either increase or decrease the levels of voltage.

The switching technology makes the electronic conversion more power-efficient. It eliminates excessive heat sinking and enhances the endurance of the battery of portable devices. The electronic convertors are designed in a way that they can move in dual directions. For instance, during regenerative braking of cars, where power is given to the wheels of a car while driving, nut it gets supplied with the brakes while braking. Thus, bi-directional conversion of power is useful.

Magnetic conversion

The energy is routinely stored and then released from a magnetic field in such a kind of dc to dc step up converter. Inductors or transformers are used in a frequency ranging from 300KHz to 10MHz. When the duty cycle of charging voltage is adjusted, the power transferred to a load in a device can be effectively controlled. The control in voltage can be rendered to the input, and output current, or even to the stable constant power. Also known as a transformer-based converter, it offers isolation between input and output power.

Non-isolated converters

These converters are used when there is a change in the voltage level, but it is small. The output and input ends have common ground in the non-isolated converter. There are different types of non-isolated converters. They are as follows.

  • The step-down converter, also known as “buck” is used to yield a lower voltage than the input power.
  • The step-up converter, also referred to as boost generates a higher voltage than the input power.
  • In the buck-boost converter, there is a possibility of increasing or decreasing the output voltage than the input voltage. The converter functions either to generate a higher power voltage or a lower voltage.

Isolated converters

Isolated converters have a difference between the input and output ends. The converters are known to have high isolation voltage features and have the potential to eliminate any kind of interference and noise. Hence, a better DC source can be produced. Isolated converters are two types:

  1. Flyback converter, which functions more or less like the non-isolating buck-boost converter. The only difference is that a flyback converter uses a transformer instead of an inductor to store energy.
  2. The forward converter delivers energy between input and output using a single step.


A dc to dc step up converter takes the power and passes it through a switching appliance. This turns the DC signal into an AC square wave signal. This wave, in return, passes through another filter then transforms into a DC signal of the demanded voltage power. The primary advantage of using a DC converter is that the battery space can be reduced by either increasing or decreasing the required input voltage.

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