Temperature Monitors

Measuring temperature is critical in today’s electronic designs, since the complexity of large integrated circuits is limited by how much power or heat they can dissipate. However, accurately measuring temperature, as well as other critical parameters, can be a challenge. The type of sensor chosen, the resistance introduced by traces and accuracy of the monitor itself all affect overall temperature monitoring accuracy. Nevertheless, measuring the point sources of heat, such as microprocessors or FPGAs, can increase overall system health and reliability since heat minimization events can be triggered. Linear Technology’s high accuracy temperature monitors are equipped with series resistance cancellation and work extremely well with diode-connected transistors (diode sensors) when measuring temperature. Aside from being commonly found in microprocessors and FPGAs, diode sensors exhibit very good linearity and accuracy, as well as low complexity and cost, and have a temperature range that is compatible with most electronic systems.

Linear Technology offers dedicated temperature monitors, as well as highly configurable devices that measure temperature and other parameters. If only measuring temperature, the LTC2997 single temperature monitor is a simple 2mm x 3mm device that measures an external temperature with ±0.25°C accuracy or its own internal temperature with ±0.5°C accuracy and provides a voltage-proportional-to-absolute-temperature (VPTAT) output. The LTC2995 takes the LTC2997 and adds temperature alerts and two voltage monitoring channels for a much more integrated solution. If a digital interface is required, the LTC2990/LTC2991 quad/octal I2C temperature monitors can be configured in up to 35 different ways, perfect for systems that need simple digital monitoring of combinations of temperature, voltage and current.

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