Another characteristic of any linear regulator is that it requires a finite amount of time to "correct" the output voltage after a change in load current demand. This "time lag" defines the characteristic called transient response, which is a measure of how fast the regulator returns to steady-state conditions after a load change.
The thermal limit circuit can sink all of the current from the error amplifier output, and keep the regulator output voltage/current as low as needed to maintain the junction temperature at 160°C. As shown, the thermal limiter can "override" the voltage control loop when needed to prevent damage to the IC.
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