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Small switched mode power supplies

Introduction

Here are some of my experiments involving design of small switching power supplies (SMPS’s). Years ago I believed this might be one way to cut down the cost, size and weight of low voltage power supplies in various other projects, such as Tesla coils. Over time I learned the lesson, realizing how SMPS design is a difficult power electronics as well as a control theory problem; my designs tended to turn unstable and it took me long to realize exactly why – this was way before the college and I had no idea what right half-plane zeros were. My attempts at regulation were usually simple proportional error amplifiers! I’ve also attempted things like attempting to re-use transformers scavenged from other smps’s – of course, this resulted in a lot of failures and is not something I’d recommend; actually, I wouldn’t recommend other hobbyists to embark into SMPS design as a part of another project, when a simple transformer, rectifier and a linear regulator will in most cases suffice! And then, SMPS’s are so cheap on ebay today, anyway. If you still wish to design an SMPS as an excersise on it’s own, that’s ok, but is still likely uneconomical in small quantities.

 

More to come later. A pic of SMPS prototypes:

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