Another key feature of the connection circuitry is that it
provides bidirectional buffering, keeping the backplane
and card capacitances isolated. Because of this isolation,
the waveforms on the backplane busses look slightly
different than the corresponding card bus waveforms, as
described here.
Input to Output Offset Voltage
When a logic low voltage, V
, is driven on any of the
LTC4300A’s data or clock pins, the LTC4300A regulates
the voltage on the other side of the chip (call it V
to a slightly higher voltage, as directed by the following
= V
+ 75mV + (V
/R) • 100
where R is the bus pull-up resistance in ohms. For ex-
ample, if a device is forcing SDAOUT to 10mV where
= 3.3V and the pull-up resistor R on SDAIN is 10k,
then the voltage on SDAIN = 10mV + 75mV + (3.3/10000)
• 100 = 118mV. See the Typical Performance Character-
istics section for curves showing the offset voltage as a
function of V
and R.
Propagation Delays
During a rising edge, the rise-time on each side is deter-
mined by the combined pull-up current of the LTC4300A
boost current and the bus resistor and the equivalent
capacitance on the line. If the pull-up currents are the
same, a difference in rise-time occurs which is directly
proportional to the difference in capacitance between the
two sides. This effect is displayed in Figure 1 for V
3.3V and a 10k pull-up resistor on each side (50pF on
one side and 150pF on the other). Since the output side
has less capacitance than the input, it rises faster and the
effective t
is negative.
There is a finite propagation delay, t
, through the con-
nection circuitry for falling waveforms. Figure 2 shows
the falling edge waveforms for the same V
, pull-up
resistors and equivalent capacitance conditions as used
in Figure 1. An external NMOS device pulls down the volt-
age on the side with 150pF capacitance; the LTC4300A
pulls down the voltage on the opposite side, with a delay
of 55ns. This delay is always positive and is a function of
When the LTC4300A first receives power on its V
either during power-up or during live insertion, it starts
in an undervoltage lockout (UVLO) state, ignoring any
activity on the SDA and SCL pins until V
rises above
2.5V. For the LTC4300A-2, the part also waits for V
rise above 2V. This ensures that the part does not try to
function until it has enough voltage to do so.
During this time, the 1V precharge circuitry is also ac-
tive and forces 1V through 100k nominal resistors to the
SDA and SCL pins. Because the I/O card is being plugged
into a live backplane, the voltage on the backplane SDA
and SCL busses may be anywhere between 0V and V
Precharging the SCL and SDA pins to 1V minimizes the
worst-case voltage differential these pins will see at the
moment of connection, therefore minimizing the amount
of disturbance caused by the I/O card.
Once the LTC4300A comes out of UVLO, it assumes that
SDAIN and SCLIN have been inserted into a live system
and that SDAOUT and SCLOUT are being powered up at the
same time as itself. Therefore, it looks for either a stop bit
or bus idle condition on the backplane side to indicate the
completion of a data transaction. When either one occurs,
the part also verifies that both the SDAOUT and SCLOUT
voltages are high. When all of these conditions are met,
the input-to-output connection circuitry is activated, joining
the SDA and SCL busses on the I/O card with those on
the backplane, and the rise time accelerators are enabled.
Connection Circuitry
Once the connection circuitry is activated, the functionality
of the SDAIN and SDAOUT pins is identical. A low forced on
either pin at any time results in both pin voltages being low.
For proper operation, logic low input voltages should be
no higher than 0.4V with respect to the ground pin voltage
of the LTC4300A. SDAIN and SDAOUT enter a logic high
state only when all devices on both SDAIN and SDAOUT
release high. The same is true for SCLIN and SCLOUT.
This important feature ensures that clock stretching, clock
synchronization, arbitration and the acknowledge protocol
always work, regardless of how the devices in the system
are tied to the LTC4300A.