I have the task to build and control 35 heaters, 10 W each. I first thought about using power resistors (like in this datasheet) as heating devices, but they'd need high currents in order to get the desired dissipation (10 W each):
- case temperature about 100 °C,
- 10 V supply,
- 1 Ohm resistors
I'd need 35 linear regulators in order to control them appropriately. PWM might also work, but that would put timing requirements on the sensing algorithm (I could only sense voltage drop and current while they are on).
The next idea was to use high power BJTs instead, such as the MJB45H11 (PNP, D²PAK). I could just give them a small current through the base, and they can happily dissipate 10W as well - the derating curve tells me that's OK. To me this seems to be a good idea, I've just not done anything like that before (also I have no real electronics education, just hobbyist knowledge).
- Apart from being a bit harder to control, are there any reasons not to use BJTs instead of resistors for heating?
- If you don't advise against this plan in the first place: is there a recommended "front end" for controlling the base current?