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ECE 304: Low-frequency Capacitors

Schematic
VP 15.00V
+

10.10mA

{VCC}
0

PARAMETERS:

15.00V VP 100.0uA
+

VP 10.00mA

VCC = 15V RC = 1k

CBY = 100uF CC = 50uF VB = {IC*(1+1/B_F)*RE+VBE} RB = {B_F*(VCC-VB)/IC}

{RB} 100.0uA B -10.10mA 1.010V

{RC} Q1 Qn E {RE}

RE = 100 OUT 5.000V


PARAMETERS:

1.725V R1
+
+
AC Sweep

RS = 100

{RS}

{CC}

PARAMETERS:

1V

B_f = 100 I_S = 10fA {CBY}

VTH = 25.86418640mV IC = 10mA VBE = {Vth*LOG(IC/I_S)}

132.8KV
0

1A

{RB}

.model Qn NPN (Is={I_S}, Bf={B_F})

FIGURE 1 CE amplifier with coupling and bypass capacitors; evaluator circuit shows value of RB

Gain and phase plots


50
CBY=100uF
(460.54,45.86)
(10.00K,48.89dB)

19.67dB

25

0
(CC=5uF,3.816,16.54)

-25

(CC=50uF,331.44m,16.56)

(CC=1mF,16.38m,16.59)

-50 1.0mHz

10mHz VDB(OUT)

100mHz
16.5

1.0Hz

10Hz

100Hz

1.0KHz

10KHz

Frequency

FIGURE 2 Gain vs. frequency for coupling capacitors CC = 1mF, 50F and 5f
-80

CC=5uF -120 CC=50uF

-160

CC=1mF

(85.25,-110.96)

CBY=100uF -200 1.0mHz 10mHz P(V(OUT))

-180

100mHz -135

1.0Hz -90

10Hz

100Hz

1.0KHz

10KHz

Frequency

FIGURE 3 Phase plots corresponding to Figure 2

Unpublished work 10/19/2004 J R Brews Page 1

10/21/2004

NAME MODEL IB IC VBE VBC VCE BETADC GM RPI RX RO CBE CBC CJS BETAAC CBX/CBX2 FT/FT2
FIGURE 4

Q_Q1 Qn 1.00E-04 1.00E-02 7.15E-01 -3.28E+00 3.99E+00 1.00E+02 3.87E-01 2.59E+02 0.00E+00 1.00E+15 0.00E+00 0.00E+00 0.00E+00 1.00E+02 0.00E+00 6.15E+18

PSPICE output data

Interaction between CC and CBY


Although CBY dominates the low frequency corner frequency, when CC is made too small it crowds CBY and raises the corner frequency. An example is shown in Figure 5 and Figure 6.
50

(CC=1mF,462.03,45.87) (CC=1uF,903.83,45.89) CBY=100uF

-50 100mHz VDB(OUT)

1.0Hz

10Hz

100Hz Frequency

1.0KHz

10KHz

100KHz

FIGURE 5

Gain plot for two cases; moving CC higher has almost doubled fL

-100

-150

CBY=100uF -200 100mHz 1.0Hz P(V(OUT)) -180

10Hz
-90

100Hz

1.0KHz

10KHz

100KHz

Frequency

FIGURE 6

Phase for same cases as Figure 5

The curves show the extreme cases where CC is large enough (1 mF) that it is a complete shortcircuit when CBY begins to be active, and the contrary case (CC =1F) where both are active in the same frequency region. A design that avoids interaction between CC and CBY (1 mF case) uses a value of CC far too large to be practical. A better design than CC = 1 mF would increase CBY to allow a lower value for CC and still obtain the same corner frequency of 462 Hz.

Unpublished work 10/19/2004 J R Brews Page 2

10/21/2004

If we assume that obtaining the minimum area for the capacitors is a design goal, a plot like that in Figure 7 could be used to find the best value for CBY. The existence of a minimum value for the total capacitance is argued as follows. At large CBY the total capacitance increases almost linearly with CBY because CC is too small to matter. Therefore, at large CBY the total capacitance increases as CBY increases. On the other hand, the lowest value CBY can have is when CC is a short circuit, because CC then contributes nothing to the corner frequency. To be a short-circuit, CC has to be infinity, so the total capacitance also is infinity. Thus, as CBY drops towards its lowest value, the total capacitance heads for infinity. Because the total capacitance increases as CBY goes up and also as CBY goes down, there has to be a minimum in the total capacitance, as Figure 7 shows.

170 150 130 110 90 70 50 90

fC=500Hz
121

CBY+CC CC

40
CC (uF)
10/21/2004

CBY+CC (uF)

30 20 10

100

110

120 CBY (uF)

130

140

0 150

FIGURE 7

Plot of PSPICE results for total capacitance vs. CBY at a fixed corner frequency of 500 Hz showing a minimum in the total capacitance of 111.6 F near CBY = 103 F and CC = 8.6 F; the labeled point is the 80%/20% heuristic design

Although we might want to use the true minimum-area design in a final product, when we are thinking about the design in the early stages, we may not want to spend time to create such plots for a lot of possibilities. To avoid making many plots, we can adopt the heuristic of the text book and simply find CC and CBY using the approximation that CBY contributes 80% of fC and CC contributes 20%. This choice is labeled in Figure 7 and, in this example, is a value within 10% of the best choice. Once we have settled on the design we want, we can fine-tune by making a plot like Figure 7 if it turns out that the design area is a critical factor.

Exercises
1. Construct Bode phase plots to correspond to CC = 1 mF and CBY = 100 F in Figure 3. This construction requires exact frequency expressions for the gain for the case when CC is a short and CBY is active, and for the case when CBY is an open circuit and CC is active. 2. Assuming we want a low-frequency corner at fL = 500 Hz, select values for CBY and CC. Base the design on the short-circuit time-constant estimate of the corner and assume CBY contributes 80% of fC. Use the data in Figure 4. Check your results with PSPICE.

Unpublished work 10/19/2004 J R Brews Page 3