Power Integrations: electronic circuits and power conversion

Power Integrations designs, develops and markets analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits (ICs) and other electronic components and circuits used in high-voltage power conversion.

As of December 31, 2022, the company had 831 full-time employees in 14 countries, 370 of whom were based in North America and 55% overseas: 334 in the Asia-Pacific region and 127 in Europe. It is headquartered in Jose California, USA.

Power Integrations’ products are used in power converters that transform electricity from a high-voltage source into the type of energy required for a specific downstream use.

In most cases, this conversion involves, among other functions, converting alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC) or vice versa, reducing or increasing the voltage, and regulating the output voltage and/or current to customer specifications.

A large percentage of its products are integrated circuits used in AC-DC power supplies, which convert high-voltage alternating current from a power outlet into the low-voltage direct current required by most electronic devices.

The company posted net revenues of $651 million and achieved net income of $171 million in 2022.

Power Integrations

Power supplies incorporating the company’s products are used in all types of electronic products, such as cell phones, computer and networking equipment, home appliances, electronic meters, battery-powered tools, industrial controls, and «home automation» or «Internet of Things» applications, such as networked thermostats, power strips, and security devices.

The company also supplies high-voltage LED drivers, which are AC-DC ICs designed specifically for lighting applications using light-emitting diodes, and motor driver ICs for brushless DC (BLDC) motors used in refrigerators, HVAC systems, ceiling fans and other light commercial and appliance applications.

Virtually all electronic devices that plug into an electrical outlet need a power supply to convert the high-voltage AC power supplied by utilities into the low-voltage DC power needed by most electronic devices.

A power supply can be inside an appliance, such as a household appliance or flat screen TV, or outside it, as in the case of a cell phone charger or an adapter for a cordless phone or cable modem.


Until about 1970, AC-DC power supplies were typically linear or line-frequency transformers.

These devices, consisting mainly of a copper wire wound around an iron core, are usually bulky and heavy, and tend to waste a considerable amount of electricity.

In the 1970s, the availability of discrete high-voltage semiconductors enabled the development of a new generation of power supplies known as switching power supplies or switch-mode power supplies.

These switchers became cost-effective alternatives to linear transformers in applications requiring more than a few watts of power; in recent years, the use of linear transformers has declined further as a result of energy efficiency standards and rising commodity prices.

High power

Switches are typically smaller, lighter and more energy efficient than linear transformers. However, switches designed with discrete components are very complex, contain numerous components and require a high level of analog design expertise.

In addition, the complexity and high number of components in discrete switches make them relatively expensive, difficult to manufacture and prone to failure.

Some discrete switches lack protection and power efficiency features; adding these features can further increase the number of components, cost and complexity of the power supply.

In high-power systems, such as industrial motor drives, electric locomotives and renewable energy systems, power conversion is typically accomplished using high-power silicon transistor arrays known as IGBT modules.

These modules operate with electronic circuits known as gate drivers (or IGBT controllers), whose function is to ensure accurate, safe and reliable operation of the IGBT modules.

Like discrete power supplies, discrete gate drivers are often very complex and require a large number of components and a great deal of design expertise.


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