Thermal management is a critical part of system design. FPGAs and processors often require heat sinks and fans, to the extent that a failure (stopped fan or obstructed heat sink) would cause damage. These devices often have a pin connected to an on-die diode temperature sensor. It is also useful to know the temperature of other points on a board to monitor system health.
Linear Technology’s family of temperature monitor products addresses these applications by allowing a generic diode-connected transistor to be used as a 1°C accurate temperature sensor. This level of accuracy also opens up instrumentation applications, such as cold-junction compensation of large arrays of thermocouples, HVAC and environmental monitoring.