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News

Sandia engineers develop multi-purpose, high-voltage power supply

DOE/Sandia National Laboratories : 17 December, 2006  (Company News)
Engineers at Sandia National Laboratories in California have designed a miniature power supply device with potential applications in drug delivery systems, medicine, portable detection and analysis, and a host of electronic devices. Sandia is actively soliciting industry partners to license, manufacture, and sell the new technology, which researchers say offers a turn-key solution to high-voltage power supply needs.
Engineers at Sandia National Laboratories in California have designed a miniature power supply device with potential applications in drug delivery systems, medicine, portable detection and analysis, and a host of electronic devices. Sandia is actively soliciting industry partners to license, manufacture, and sell the new technology, which researchers say offers a turn-key solution to high-voltage power supply needs.

The device, including the circuit board assembly, measures 0.6 (width) by 1.45 (length) by 0.8 (height) inches in overall size. It serves as a miniature modular high voltage power supply system and features voltage regulation, current sinking, current monitoring, and electronic float, a combination unavailable on any existing supply. It was designed specifically for powering Sandia National Laboratories’ µChemLab device at high voltages and low currents with low power consumption. µChemLab is a portable, hand-held chemical and biological detection system with homeland security, defense, environmental, and medical applications.

Sandia designed the power supply when it found no existing commercial products that met the high voltage electrical requirements of the µChemLab instrument, even in a much larger package. For µChemLab, Sandia required low power consumption, tolerance to arcing, and the ability to support constant current mode under software control, all in the same small package. Once developed, Sandia researchers realized that the unique features represent an ideal, low-cost solution for other scientific and engineering applications that require robust high voltage power, stable regulated voltage, current monitoring, and a float capability.

Jill Micheau, a business development associate at Sandia, said companies with the technical capability and manufacturing capacity to produce these devices for government and commercial applications are encouraged to contact Sandia by Oct. 31 for information on licensing. “The device is ideal for uses that require regulated voltage, current monitoring and the capability to allow floating circuits by isolating outputs,” said Micheau. “Able to both source and sink current, it provides high voltage in either controlled-current or controlled-voltage modes.”

The power supply technology and µChemLab both offer licensing opportunities. Additional information about the power supply and other µChemLab technologies and partnership opportunities at Sandia may be found at http://www.ca.sandia.gov/industry_partner/MicroChem_partnerships.html, or by emailing CA-Partnerships@sandia.gov
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