Vol. 72, No. 5, November 2017

  Special Reports 1

Semiconductor Technologies Supporting Highly Efficient Power Supply Management and Energy Utilization

Toshiba Semiconductor Devices Contributing to Energy Conservation

Trends in and Future Outlook for Semiconductor Devices with Enhanced Energy Efficiency
YAMAGUCHI Masakazu / ONO Shoji / HATANO Wataru
Among the issues that need to be addressed on a global scale are the growth in energy consumption and rise in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. To conserve energy while meeting the increasing demand for electricity, it is necessary to improve energy efficiency at all stages from electric power generation to electricity consumption.
Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation is promoting the development of various integrated circuits (ICs) and power devices as key parts in a broad range of fields, ranging from mobile, automotive, and other industrial applications to electric energy conversion equipment. We are making continuous efforts to supply such products in order to contribute to enhanced energy efficiency.

LDO Regulator ICs Enhancing Sophistication of Mobile Devices
ARAI Kentaro / OGURA Akio
With the expansion of the mobile phone market in recent years, global annual shipments of mobile phone products will exceed 1.8 billion units in fiscal 2017. Smartphones have become an indispensable part of daily life due to their advanced functionality that cannot be realized with conventional feature phones.
To enhance the functionality of mobile devices typified by smartphones, Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation is promoting the development of discrete semiconductor products, including low-dropout (LDO) regulator integrated circuits (ICs), featuring superior power supply ripple rejection characteristics and load transient response as well as low power consumption.

PPI Switching Devices for HVDC Systems
TSUKAMOTO Naoto / NITTA Tetsuya / TERAMAE Satoshi
Reduction of the power consumption of equipment used in the power electronics field is an important issue as part of efforts to prevent global warming. Particularly for power transmission and distribution applications, high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission systems have been put to practical use as an energy-saving method suitable for long-distance, large-capacity power transmission.
Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation has developed and released a line of injection enhanced gate transistors (IEGTs) known as press-pack IEGTs (PPIs) as switching devices for HVDC systems. These PPIs incorporate the following features: (1) an 18% reduction in energy loss through the introduction of a new trench structure, (2) an improved short-circuit failure mode (SCFM) allowing 50 hours of continuous current driving in the event of device failure, and (3) high rupture resistance through the application of a new package that achieves 1.7 times the rupture resistance of conventional packages.

Evolution of Wide-Bandgap Semiconductors for Power Devices Expanding Fields of Application
Wide-bandgap semiconductors including silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) are currently attracting attention for use in next-generation power devices due to their excellent characteristics offering higher energy efficiency.
Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation has been developing key technologies to improve the performance of SiC power devices focusing on the reduction of wafer thickness and cell miniaturization, and has been continuously releasing a wide variety of SiC power devices. The application of SiC hybrid modules to traction inverters for rolling stock, for example, is contributing to reductions in the size and weight of such inverters. We are also developing GaN power devices capable of performing high-speed switching operations, including a quasi-normally-off GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) and a GaN metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET).

Power Management IC for cSSDs Realizing Space Saving and Low Power Consumption
With the reductions in unit price per storage capacity of solid-state drives (SSDs) equipped with NAND flash memory in recent years, the replacement of hard disk drives (HDDs) by SSDs as storage devices for client systems, including notebook PCs and tablets, has been progressing. However, the higher speed interfaces and larger storage capacities of such client SSDs (cSSDs) may result in a trend toward increasing power consumption in the future. It has therefore become necessary to improve the energy conservation performance of cSSDs in accordance with international standards such as the Energy Star program.
In response to this situation, Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation developed the TC7738WBG power management integrated circuit (IC) for cSSDs with the aim of realizing both space saving and low power consumption in December 2016. The TC7738WBG achieves a reduction in power consumption of approximately 55% during sleep mode, when power consumption is at its lowest, and a reduction in package area of up to 30% through the use of a wafer-level chip scale package (WLCSP) and an onboard protection switch instead of the conventional fuse, respectively, compared with our conventional products.

PMMCD Series ICs with Motor Control and Power Management Functions
SASAKI Katsunori / MIURA Tsukasa / MURAKAMI Manabu
Motor control driver (MCD) integrated circuits (ICs) are used for controlling various systems that utilize motors, such as office equipment, home appliances, and in-vehicle systems. Particularly in the case of MCD ICs for office equipment, including inkjet printers, there is a need for a power management function that can supply several different voltages to other devices in the equipment and manage their power consumption, in addition to the basic motor control function.
In response to these market needs, Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation has been developing and supplying a lineup of multifunctional ICs called the PMMCD (Power Management Motor Control Driver) series incorporating motor control and power management functions in a single chip. We have recently been focusing on further enhancing the functions of the PMMCD series while paying close attention to customers' requirements for reductions in the size and power consumption of their equipment. The latest-generation PMMCD series ICs are expected to contribute to solutions realizing a more compact footprint and cost savings by reducing the size and number of peripheral parts.

TZ1201XBG Processor Offering Low Power Consumption for Wearable Devices
INOUE Tatsuo / KUSHIDA Sohei / IMAI Shigeo
The market for wearable devices, which constitute one category in the Internet of Things (IoT) field, is expected to expand in the future.
In response to this market trend, Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation started mass production of the TZ1201XBG processor for wearable devices, offering both high functionality and low power consumption, in July 2017. The TZ1201XBG incorporates various functions for wearable applications integrated in one chip, while at the same time achieving a low current consumption of 70 μA/MHz in active mode due to the application of various low-power technologies. The numerous analog functions provided by this device make it possible to perform up to four-channel voltage/current/impedance multi-sensing operations with a minimized external circuit, resulting in one-quarter the power consumption in low-power mode compared with the case of using an external circuit.

SIMO DC-DC Converter with High Efficiency over Wide Load Range for IoT Devices
YAMADA Manabu / TRAN Nam Binh / MIYAZAKI Takayuki
A wireless sensor node for Internet of Things (IoT) devices is mostly in standby mode, in which its power consumption is less than 1 mW, and only enters active mode intermittently when performing data communication, at which time its power consumption increases to several tens of mW. Hence, single-inductor multiple-output (SIMO) DC-DC converters for IoT devices must achieve high conversion efficiency over a wide range of loads.
In response to this market requirement, Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation has been developing a SIMO DC-DC converter equipped with two new technologies: (1) a maximum-on-time (MOT) control technology, and (2) a channel-consolidated multiple-switching (CCMS) control technology. Experiments on a prototype chip fabricated using 65 nm complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) process technology have verified that its peak conversion efficiency is 86.3%, while its conversion efficiency over a wide load range from 1 μW to 50 mW is 65.3% or more. The new SIMO DC-DC converter is expected to contribute to lengthening of the operating time of IoT devices powered by coin type lithium-ion batteries.


  Special Reports 2

Measurement and Control Systems Supporting Smart Manufacturing Industries

Advanced Technologies for Measurement and Control Systems in Era of Industrial IoT
NISHIO Atsuhiko

Trends in Measurement and Control Systems and Solutions for Evolution of Infrastructure Systems
ANAN Kazuhiro / UMEDA Yuji / KAJIHARA Shigeru
Measurement and control systems are widely applied in the fields of general industry and social infrastructure systems. With the recent trend toward declining labor populations in developed countries, it is necessary for manufacturing industries to construct production systems capable of minimizing manufacturing costs, especially in the general industry field. Such measurement and control systems are therefore now required to handle technologies for Internet of Things (IoT) and secure control systems.
In keeping with this trend, Toshiba Infrastructure Systems & Solutions Corporation has been continuously developing technologies for industrial controllers, industrial computers, and field instruments, which are the main components of industrial and social infrastructure systems. We are supplying solutions to support the evolution of these systems while maintaining the balance of inheritability and interoperability, in order to renew existing systems and provide new functions.

FA2100T Model 700 Slim Type Industrial Computer
INARI Masaru / SHIBAMIYA Toru / NAKAMURA Tadamichi
In response to the growing volume of communication and calculation data due to the wide dissemination of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in factories and other facilities in various industrial fields, the need has arisen to upgrade industrial computers. Not only are industrial computers being upgraded to strengthen their specifications, such as by increasing storage capacity, improving computing performance, and enhancing security, but they are also required to play a new role as edge computing terminals.
As a solution to this situation, Toshiba Infrastructure Systems & Solutions Corporation has developed the FA2100T model 700 as its latest-model slim type industrial computer. The FA2100T model 700 inherits the following features of predecessor models cultivated through our accumulated experience in the development of industrial computers: robustness; maintainability; reliability, availability, and serviceability (RAS) functions; and long-term supply and maintenance. This model is expected to contribute to the long-term stable operation of systems in a wide range of fields, including various social and general infrastructure systems and industrial embedded systems.

Industrial Systems and Components Flexibly and Securely Responding to Needs of IoT Systems for Facilities
OKABE Motohiko / TATENO Genki / MOMOTAKE Hiroyuki
In the field of control systems for plants and infrastructure facilities, movements toward the downsizing of overall systems, utilization of big data, and interconnection between multiple devices developed by different vendors have recently been progressing. Furthermore, accompanying the expansion of industrial Internet of Things (IoT) devices, there is a strong need for industrial controllers capable of constructing a safe and secure system to address the increased risks of vulnerability in an open network.
In this context, Toshiba Infrastructure Systems & Solutions Corporation has developed the Unified Controller nv-pack series "typeFR" as a new industrial controller product through the effective utilization and inheritance of existing technologies. The typeFR integrates controller and computer applications into one unit in order to reduce installation space and allow it to be easily connected to higher-level information systems. In addition, our software products ensure connectivity to networks and safety of control systems complying with international security standards.

Sensor Devices Shouldering Realization of CPS and IoT Systems in Infrastructure Fields
IIJIMA Takuya / KAGAWA Takeshi / FUKAI Wataru
The Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to play an increasingly prominent role in facility control and management in the fields of social and industrial infrastructure systems. This will be implemented through analysis and visualization based on data and information stored in cyberspace, which will be derived from the overall equipment in the physical space via the Internet. The cyber-physical systems (CPS) connecting this physical space and cyberspace perform analysis of data and operation of facilities. In these CPS and IoT systems, sensor devices focused on and installed in infrastructure systems play a key role in the transmission of data from physical space to cyberspace.
Toshiba Infrastructure Systems & Solutions Corporation has developed the following sensor devices as edge devices for infrastructure systems: (1) an immersion type level transmitter to monitor water resources, which will become increasingly important in the future; and (2) a width gauge to support high-quality and high-efficiency steel rolling processes. We are also developing a thickness gauge with a predictive diagnosis function to provide notifications of maintenance timings and targeted items.

Overall Optimization of Plant Operations through Collaboration of Process Database and Electronic Plant Operation Log
Manufacturing industries have recently been focusing attention on solutions to various issues encountered at production sites through the analysis of big data related to plant operations collected by Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation has developed and released PLANETMEISTER™ (hereafter abbreviated as PMD), a process database that can collect process data over a prolonged period, and PlantLogMeister™ (hereafter abbreviated as PLM), an electronic plant operation log that replaces conventional paper-based logs. These technologies are contributing to the solution of various issues at manufacturing sites. We are making further efforts to develop and implement a variety of functions by integrating PMD and PLM, with the aim of realizing the overall optimization of plant operations.

Unified Control Solution for Steel and General Industrial Plants
NAGAO Hidenori / FUJIEDA Hiroyuki
Steel plants and general industrial plants such as pulp and paper plants are conventionally controlled by a system consisting of individual equipment, including programmable logic controllers (PLCs), process computers (P/Cs), and servers, in which each function is implemented according to the type of control and response speed. Particularly in systems that process high-speed and large-volume data, demand has been increasing in recent years for both high-speed response to actuators and connectivity to general networks.
In response to this market demand, Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation has developed and been supplying a unified control solution applying the Unified Controller nv-pack series, incorporating a P/C and functions conventionally processed by PLCs in one package, as an alternative to the combination of individual equipment. It is also capable of integrating a monitoring system. We are promoting the replacement of conventional layered systems with meshed systems by applying this simplified solution.

Technologies for Measurement and Control Systems Contributing to Development of Social and Industrial Infrastructure in Asia-Pacific Region
TARUISHI Hajime / FUKAI Eigo / HORIE Kazuhiro
Accompanying the recent economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region, demand has been growing for civil engineering and construction machinery as well as various production lines for the development and expansion of social and industrial infrastructure. In order to fulfill these market needs, both the reduction of total system costs including those of measurement and control systems and the improvement of operational capabilities through the use of differentiated technologies are essential.
Under these circumstances, the Toshiba Group has received a succession of orders for control systems for tunnel boring machines (TBMs) and for production lines for spandex synthetic fiber. These systems incorporate several innovative technologies including a newly developed built-in application that allows a directly inverter-connected programmable logic controller (PLC) to be connected to other devices to realize cost reduction, and a synchronous boost and limit control technology for multiple motors to improve productivity. Furthermore, we are developing a motor failure prediction and diagnosis technology and an advanced process control (APC) optimizer as solutions to improve operational capabilities.


  Feature Articles

Cooling Performance Diagnosis Method to Improve Reliability of Industrial Electronic Equipment
SUZUKI Tomoyuki / TAKAMATSU Tomonao
Overheating of heat-generating components inside electronic equipment can lead to shortened lifetime and system failure. Particularly in industrial fields, it is essential to carefully consider the thermal design of electronic equipment so that it is capable of continuous long-term operation under severe conditions. However, it is difficult to forecast the deterioration of cooling performance because the temperature of each semiconductor device inside electronic equipment is affected not only by insufficient cooling caused by clogging of inlet filters, evaporation of thermoconductive grease from heat sinks, etc., but also by various other factors including environmental temperature.
Focusing on factors affecting temperature distribution inside industrial electronic equipment, Toshiba Corporation has developed a cooling performance diagnosis method to infer the conditions of each factor represented by a multivariate function of temperature at multiple locations based on knowledge of heat transport phenomena, and confirmed its effectiveness through experiments. This method facilitates the appropriate timing of maintenance according to the usage conditions by monitoring cooling component conditions in real time and identifying the causes of performance deterioration with high accuracy.


  Frontiers of  Research & Development

Technology for Text Data Analysis and Visualization Based on Machine Learning

* Company, product, and service names appearing in each paper include those that are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.