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A Modular Power Supply is one that is assembled (configured) using a variety of pre-built building blocks (modules). This gives the customer a maximum choice for his voltage, current, signals & case style.
They are nearly the same thing, although TDK-Lambda differentiates between ‘modulars’ and ‘configurables’. ‘Configurables’ are configured ‘on board’ with discrete components – take the NV175 as an example – ‘modulars’ on the other hand are configured using modules.
Actually no, it is very easy… most modular power supply manufacturers have ‘online configurators’ that are very intuitive. Some, such as TDK-Lambda’s, will generate a unique customer part number once the selection is finalised.
At TDK-Lambda you can buy as few as one. Their modular power supplies are built using sophisticated manufacturing methods. The bills of materials are automatically generated, fed down to the production line and then quickly assembled using pre-built assemblies. Stock of the pre-built assemblies is managed by Kan Ban methods that trigger replenishment orders from the various workcells in the facility.
A good modular power supply series has all the safety certifications in-place to cover all of the potential configurations. Often these include EN61010 (test & measurement) and EN60601 (medical) certifications.
Because the modular units use pre-built assemblies, lead-time can be as short as 48 hours. Most modular power supply manufacturers, including TDK-Lambda, offer a quick-turn service and also have well-established VAR (Value Added Reseller) networks.
Not really. Prices have dropped substantially since 1980 when TDK-Lambda first introduced modular supplies. They can be very cost-effective in quantities from 1 to 5000 or more units/year.
As these modular products are sold to a huge number of different customers, who are using them over a wide range of applications, they are field proven. With a custom or modified standard that risk goes up dramatically as you will be the "beta" site.
Yes, many output "modules" feature a wide adjustment range, often 2:1. Recently, we had a customer ask for five (5) floating 18V outputs and we were able to meet their needs with a modular power supply.
It depends on the product range you select but up to 12 outputs is quite common and up to 6 outputs is very popular.
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