The LR12 made by Supertex Inc. is a good choice for applications where a supply voltage of more than 35 to 40 V needs to be stabilized. This small regulator can cope with input voltages of up to 100 V, when the output voltage can be adjusted between 1.2 and 88 V. A small disadvantage is that the input voltage needs to be at least 12 V more than the output voltage. The regulator keeps the voltage between the output and adjusts the pin constant at 1.2 V. With a potential divider the output voltage can be set using the following equation:
Vout = 1.2 × (R2 / R1 + 1) + Iadj × R2.
The circuit shows a standard application where the LR12 is used as a 5 V regulator. C1 decouples the input voltage. Its value and working voltage depend on the input voltage and the current consumption. The bypass capacitor (C2) is required to keep the LR12 stable. In cases where the voltage at the input may be smaller than at the output, an extra protection diode is required, for example, a 1N4004. The output current of the IC needs to be at least 0.5 mA. In the circuit shown here, the potential divider made by R1/R2 already draws 0.2 mA. This means that with a 5 V output the load resistor needs to be less than 16k5. If the resistance is higher, the total output current drops below the required value of 0.5 mA. The output current of the LR12, with a 12 V difference between input and output, is limited to 100 mA (max. dissipation of a TO92 package: 0.6 W at 25 °C). The ripple suppression is at least 50 dB. The current consumption of the IC itself is very low at only 5 to 15 μA.