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Old 01-31-2010, 09:36 PM #1
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Default My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Hiya all LPF folks!
I finally got around to working on my idea of MY OWN boost converters, since the idea of having a bluray in 1 x 18650 host sound very tempting.
I found the name of my own drivers , SPARK. It is not an acrynim or anything. It just sounded nice ... it is not copyrighted already , is it?

So, let's start from the beggining. I managed to obtain free samples from:
National: LM3410X 1.6MHz driver 5pin IC in SOT223 package.
Coilcraft: well... coils

Here are the coild and LM3410s in comparison to one 10440 battery.

When I first saw them , I was kinda... I was expecting them to be the same size as those LM1117.

Then I realised it is very good that they are smaller... smaller PCB needed and maybe, just maybe it will provide some sort of challenge soldering... I was wrong about the last part

Coils are 10 uH, rated I think, 500 mA (I though it would be enough, however I was wrong, that is why this is part I)
They are here compared to LM3410 and 10440 battery for size:

So... today I started designing my PCB according to the schematic in the first page of LM3410 datasheet, with 4 external components + LD.

I figured that actually, if I leave the chip be, schematic will be simplified if you make the ground in the upper wire, and positive on below the chip, rewiring the pins and components accordingly.
That is what my PCB design is based on.
Here are first design attempts of PCB: (Just though I took a pic at that paper )



So, my design got finally completed with simply components layout and it was small enough to fin inside aixiz housing. (before the time of writing I already got planned a revised PCB in my head... jsut need to draw it somewhere )

I sharpied my PCB accordingly. PCB size is aprox 11 x 7 milimeter (+-0.5 mm I measured the thing with normal ruler)

So... after it got eched I needed to solder the components on it. Following complex rules of simple common sense, the IC was the first.

*TIP FOR THE GUYS NEW TO SMD SOLDERING*
How to solder multi-pin IC on a small PCB without hot air:
First you gotta do is melt some solder on your soldering tip, and gently touch each pad where IC is gonny go.
Once touched, drag your soldering iron along the line, flowing the solder along with it.
Then, use a desolder pump on every pad, except one (preferably the middle one). Then using your tweezers, place the IC over it's pads.
Then, while holding IC, use the soldering iron to melt the pad that was not sucked so it is a bit fatter then the others, and the IC will sink into the solder and stay there.
When melting the pad, touch with soldering iron about 1 or 2 milimeter along the line of it, so you can place the IC without moving the iron away. That is why we dragged a bit of solder along the lines.
Use same method on rest of pads once the IC is secured, touch the pad a bit up it's line and then melt some solder in the pad. BUT only a little bit, and only if neccesary, usually the remains of solder will do the job good!

So, here are my pads:



And here is IC soldered on it. No you do not need no expensive soldering stations or hot air reworks. I have 4$ soldering iron (with regulator done-myself)




*END OF TIP*

Anyhow.
The entire thing got nicely assembled. It looked very nice and professional until last two components. I only had DO41 epoxy case schottky, and for output cap, a ceramic disk cap was used. So it ruined all-SMD looks, but function is the same. I will get some SMD schottkys and revision will make me able to use SMD caps also.

So, once the thing was assembled, I used a 3.5Vdrop dummy load, with 1 ohm resistor. SPARK was set to 100 mA using 2.0 ohm resistor on feedback line.

Hooked up one 10440 battery. Grabbed DMM and measured 96 mV of drop on 1ohm resistor. AWSOME!

So nothing is shorted and everything working. Or so I though.

I instantly grabbed one SCC red diode I had a spare. Hooked it up...
Bright red light, YES! PCB of driver only got warm, not hot.

If you do not like sad stories, stop reading now.

Well after consulting with mr. Common Sense (SOB, gonna get back at him for this), next thing I did was hook up a PHR diode, that this driver was mentioned for.

Soldering went quickly like any other so I am sure it was not the problem.
10440 batt steps on stage.
Quick flash and faint glow. Connect again, no flash only glow.

My PHR was LEDed (made sure by connecting it to old driver and retrying several times).

I got very angry then... Why would my driver failed me on the very last step to success?
Grabbed two more rectifier diodes and upgraded my dummy load from 3.5 Vdrop to bluray (5 V drop) and 5.7 V drop.
Measuring current across one ohm resistor was frustrating.
I watched the current barely reaching 20 mA with 5 V drop, constantly fluctating and presumably huge on-spikes.

DAMN!

Okay, I chilled out and replaced 2.0 ohm with 0.47 ohm resistor, trying to get 400 mA current with 3 V drop.

Amazing results. It started at 150 mA barely, and slowly over 5-10 seconds climbed to 190-200 mA and would not move on.

Retrying of everything was done several times and I concluded that the coil is not capable of meeting my requests.

I lost a PHR diode because of not properly testing with test loads.

I have only one more PHR sled, sent by Bill himself.
Once I have the proper coils, the first 1x 18650 PHR laser I make will be sent to Bill: 1) proof of concept (if that is the expression). Also thorough testing of drivers potentials and flaws, current and voltage ripple and that things.
2) personal gift from me, and a big 'thanks' for all his help, without which this project would not get started. THANKS BILL

Bottom line, replacing the coil with higher current one will get the thing to where it needs to be: a 1x 18650 host, powering some bluray diode.

Part 2 to be expected next weekend!

P.S. If you want smaller images, I will resize them, however I like to show is much as possible with my photos so...


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Old 01-31-2010, 10:08 PM #2
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Nice work Eudaimonium! Sorry to see you lost a PHR. You might try hooking it up to an oscilloscope (if you have one) and see what is going on at the output.
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Old 01-31-2010, 10:15 PM #3
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Quote:
Originally Posted by spectral532 View Post
Nice work Eudaimonium! Sorry to see you lost a PHR. You might try hooking it up to an oscilloscope (if you have one) and see what is going on at the output.
I don't have anything but my trusty old DMM. That is partially why a first laser made with this driver is going to Bill. He will have the equipement to test it's limits and characteristics.
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Old 01-31-2010, 10:33 PM #4
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Hey Eudaimonium....

Have you done a search on the Forum for any threads/posts that deal
with the LM3410...
You may get some more ideas there...

Jerry
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Old 01-31-2010, 10:35 PM #5
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Very nice indeed - the ultimate budget boost driver! Looks a lot like a design by Woop (2xAA blue ray driver (fits in aixis)), from ages ago. I've got a few LM3410s of my own lying around, and can order from Coilcraft easily. Looks like I may well throw one of my own together for a leadlight build - how well does it work from 2x AAA batteries (3v)?
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Old 01-31-2010, 11:00 PM #6
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

An interesting part one ... Shame about the death of the PHR, for experimental (and temperamental) drivers, the test load is of ultimate importance. A change to the load can have a big effect on the behavior of the output. The coil can be very finicky in these drivers. You may have to try different values. When you get one done, I can examine it with my scope and see what's going on. Your photos in this thread are fine, they do not need to be huge, since you used proper lighting, proper exposure, and proper focus. Part 2 should be interesting.
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Old 01-31-2010, 11:22 PM #7
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

I'm very excited about part 2 that we should see next week.
I hope that you only need better coil. (This one that you have is very small, looks like low power coil).

It will be cool to power up reds and BRs with 1xLi-ion.

Keep us informed!
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Old 02-01-2010, 07:22 PM #8
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

@ Jerry, I only saw some schematic for 6pin DIP casing of LM3410 , ages ago.
@Charliebruce, how are your LM3410s? Working good?
@ Bill, No I do not have inductance meter on my DMM, also, I will definetly try to get some free more powerfull coils, if not I will experiment with these in parralel or series (greater current, or voltage ).

@ ReNNo, thanks dude, will do!
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Old 02-01-2010, 08:56 PM #9
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

im glad to see this driver coming together =]
youve done an amazing job using all of your goodies from billg to your advantage!

Congratulations and i hope to see this driver fully complete very soon =]
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:01 PM #10
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Great work on the driver!! I would like to point out that whenever anyone types in white, those of us who are using the default forum skin can't see what you're typing. White text + white background = invisible..
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:11 PM #11
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Quote:
Originally Posted by ElektroFreak View Post
Great work on the driver!! I would like to point out that whenever anyone types in white, those of us who are using the default forum skin can't see what you're typing. White text + white background = invisible..
Sorry? All the letters are default white.
So if I am changing colors, to which one am I supposed to change after the coloring? The white chosen is the same as default one...

Thank you for kind words everyone, I am seriously looking forward to completing the design. If the experiment is successful with replacement coil, I will order a bulk of LM3410X and same coil model, and will make these in large quantities and simply use them in every laser I make from then on. Except multiwatt IR

@mattmagic100, thanks and yes, billg519 is a great man without whose kind gifts, this would not be made possible, not would I ever bother to get some class IV diodes, along with drivers, so I'd be pretty much retarded in a world of laser hobby (it has been 4 years and change since my first diode light up on my table... it is a shame I am still on this level that I am, but, I am proud of what I've learned so far and I am getting hungry for knowledge everyday).
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:21 PM #12
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

Hmm, weird.. It seems like after you typed "*TIP FOR THE GUYS NEW TO SMD SOLDERING*" the text turned white.. Oh well, no foul. I can always highlight the text to read it.
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:21 PM #13
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

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Originally Posted by Eudaimonium View Post

Thank you for kind words everyone, I am seriously looking forward to completing the design. If the experiment is successful with replacement coil, I will order a bulk of LM3410X and same coil model, and will make these in large quantities and simply use them in every laser I make from then on. Except multiwatt IR

@mattmagic100, thanks and yes, billg519 is a great man without whose kind gifts, this would not be made possible, not would I ever bother to get some class IV diodes, along with drivers, so I'd be pretty much retarded in a world of laser hobby (it has been 4 years and change since my first diode light up on my table... it is a shame I am still on this level that I am, but, I am proud of what I've learned so far and I am getting hungry for knowledge everyday).
I dont say this to a lot of people, but im really proud of you. You have come a long way.
good job and keep up the great work.
motivation is key to innovation.
good luck =]
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:31 PM #14
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

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Originally Posted by ElektroFreak View Post
Hmm, weird.. It seems like after you typed "*TIP FOR THE GUYS NEW TO SMD SOLDERING*" the text turned white.. Oh well, no foul. I can always highlight the text to read it.
I am not sure if you can see this, but your text went to black after the yellow CP. Still my background is grey so I can read it. I can post ya a screen shot if you want.

That is my point... different skin styles, and you cannot change the color of text to 'default', you can only choose white (or black in your case), but they are without 'default' tag so it does not get changed according to other forum skins.

AVERY! HELP!
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Originally Posted by mattmagic100 View Post
I dont say this to a lot of people, but im really proud of you. You have come a long way.
good job and keep up the great work.
motivation is key to innovation.
good luck =]
Aww thank you so much dude, I really aprecciate that.
My motivations are strong enough, proof is that i did not throw the entire thing out the window when it fried my PHR . Second one I ever owned, first one is 3 or 4 months in business and still kicks ass, driven by 'tried and true' LM1117 driver [again, thanks Bill!!]. Meaning, discovering something new is rough, especially when you do not use testing load like me
And 10$ is a lot of money to me!
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:31 PM #15
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

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Originally Posted by Eudaimonium View Post
@ Jerry, I only saw some schematic for 6pin DIP casing of LM3410 , ages ago.
You may want to contact IgorT...
IIRC... he uses the LM3410 in his Laser builds...

Jerry
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:39 PM #16
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Default Re: My LM3410x based Boost converters: Spark driver! PART 1

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Originally Posted by lasersbee View Post
You may want to contact IgorT...
IIRC... he uses the LM3410 in his Laser builds...

Jerry
He does?

Offline Skype message sent. Thank you Jerry!
Hmm, if I need it finished next weekend... heck
Even if I order a free sample of coils NOW, they would not arrive till next week. Although coilcraft is is Glasgow... same continent at least.

It would suck bad if I kept all'ya waiting one more week.
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