Istvan Novak

Istvan Novak

Istvan is a Senior Principal Engineer at Oracle working on new advanced power distribution design and validation methodologies. For eleven years prior to this Dr. Novak was responsible for the power distribution and high-speed signal integrity designs of SUN's successful workgroup server families. He introduced the industry's first 25um power-ground laminates for large rigid computer boards, and worked with component vendors to create a series of low-inductance and controlled-ESR bypass capacitors.

Dr. Novak also served as SUN's representative on the Copper Cable and Connector Workgroup of InfiniBand, and was engaged in the methodologies, designs and characterization of power-distribution networks from silicon to DC-DC converters. He has thirty five years of experience with high-speed digital, RF, and analog circuit and system design and has twenty five patents.

He is Fellow of IEEE for his contributions to the signal-integrity and RF measurement as well as simulation methodologies, lead author of the book "Frequency-Domain Characterization of Power Distribution Networks" (Artech House, 2007) and Executive Editor of the book "Power Distribution Design Methodologies" (IEC, 2008).

ARTICLES

Overview and Comparison of Power Converter Stability Metrics

Power conversion circuits with control loop(s) are everywhere in electronic systems. We must establish stability and performance metrics for control loops and their circuits. However, generally accepted metrics may not be good enough. Is a crossover frequency with 45 degrees of phase margin and 10 dB of gain margin enough? How can we relate phase margin to peaking in the impedance profile and transient noise requirements? This article aims to answer these and other questions.


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Transient Load Tester for Time Domain PDN Validation

Power distribution networks (PDNs) delivering power to ICs in a system need to be thoroughly designed and analyzed in order to make sure any voltage fluctuation on the rail is within the tolerance of every IC connected to that rail.  As ICs on the rail draw power, they generate a voltage fluctuation on the rail.  The PDN must have the capacity to supply enough charge such that the resulting voltage drop is less than the maximum voltage drop each IC on the rail can tolerate.  If voltage fluctuations appear outside IC tolerance limits, a slew of problems can surface such as IC damage, failure, or reduced lifespan.


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How Much Capacitance Do We Really Get?

We have to use enough capacitors so that the PDN functions properly. At the same time, to keep cost and size in check, we want to avoid overdesign and not use capacitors unnecessarily. Read on for advice on how to find the balance.


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