Silicon Carbide Power Modules

Silicon carbide (SiC), is an innovative new material for power applications that promises to increase system efficiency while decreasing system size, weight and form factor. Three times more thermally conductive than silicon and with lower switching losses it enables higher operating temperatures and greater voltages.

SiC modules come in 2-in-1 forms that make configuring half-bridge circuits simple, making them perfect for HEV/EV traction inverters or any mission with long periods of maximum current demand.

High Efficiency

Silicon Carbide (SiC) power devices are one of the best ways to minimize system losses in high-powered applications. Their wide bandgap enables higher switching frequencies and voltages for increased efficiency while decreasing passive component sizes. SiC also features more robust operation in demanding environments as it is three times more thermally conductive than silicon.

Discrete SiC power devices can be utilized in a wide variety of industrial applications, yet sometimes higher current ratings are needed by critical systems like uninterruptible power supplies and battery chargers. Mitsubishi Electric has introduced 1200 V 2nd Generation power modules that deliver the advantages of full SiC technology to applications with greater current requirements beyond what discrete devices can provide in an easy-to-use package.

These modules use SiC MOSFETs with half-bridge structures and are suitable for various converter topologies such as DC/DC, bidirectional, and AC/AC inverters. When compared with conventional silicon devices, these modules can reduce switching losses by up to 70% and save energy as a result.

These modules are constructed with high-reliability features to meet automotive and industrial quality standards, including wafer-level gate burn-in testing and HTRB drain stress to decrease extrinsic failure rates; short circuit ratings make them suitable for safety-critical applications; their rugged design enables operation up to 230 degC with high breakdown voltages and fast recovery times that help mitigate risks such as avalanches or shoot throughs.

SiC is an ideal material for motor drives, as it is capable of withstanding higher temperatures than traditional silicon devices while simultaneously increasing power density and improving performance over time. Furthermore, SiC’s resistance to degradation from heat means increased efficiency over long periods.

Mitsubishi Electric’s 6.5kV full-SiC power semiconductor module has achieved world-leading levels of power density. This could enable smaller, more energy-efficient power equipment for railway carriage traction systems or electricity transmission and distribution networks; plus it features decentralized control that allows multiple modules to be combined together into one larger power module for easier system design.

Low Leakage Current

Silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductors have become increasingly popular due to their energy-saving abilities in power electronics products. SiC devices are much more energy-efficient than their silicon counterparts due to a wider bandgap which requires less energy for electrons to move from valence band to conduction band and they operate at higher temperatures and voltages with reduced switching losses.

SiC-based power modules offer many advantages that make them the ideal solution for applications requiring increased efficiency, faster switching speeds and enhanced reliability, such as inverters, EV chargers, solar inverters and motor drives. Unfortunately, their high temperature can result in increased stress at the chip-substrate solder joint; over time this repetitive stress could degrade it and shorten their lifetime significantly.

Vincotech has come up with an innovative solution that dramatically increases the power cycling capability of SiC devices, such as those made by Vincotech itself. By adding a special chip-substrate solder joint, modules can now be tested at higher temperatures and with more demanding mission profiles without compromising performance or reliability.

SiC Power Module Platform from the company comprises of 3300 V modules featuring half-bridge SiC MOSFETs with integrated gate drivers and measurement circuits, lightweight AlSiC bases for mechanical stability, 175 degC continuous junction temperature operation capability and high thermal conductivity Silicon Nitride substrate to deliver superior electrical performance under harsh environments.

These new modules come packaged in an attractive 10 mm x 5 mm package that makes them suitable for space-constrained applications like automotive and aerospace, while using their matching and packaging technology, can easily become part of an integrated system.

Imperialx is currently using these new modules in various prototype power converters to demonstrate their ability to provide faster switching, higher efficiency and reduced total system cost in power conversion applications. They feature adjustable protection mechanisms to safeguard against hazardous conditions – making them an excellent solution for engineering applications needing quick downscaled converter implementation, such as teaching or research.

High Voltage

Silicon is the go-to material for power semiconductors, but other materials with superior properties such as gallium-nitride and silicon carbide (SiC) offer better efficiency at higher temperatures and voltages, enabling more power handling capacity in smaller spaces with reduced cooling requirements for energy-efficient power-integrated systems. Furthermore, less heat is lost during conversion thus decreasing cooling requirements while simultaneously making everything much more energy efficient overall.

SiC offers 10 times stronger dielectric strength than silicon, enabling devices to operate at higher voltages without becoming damaged or creating excessive heat – ideal for applications in charging infrastructure and smart grids requiring high voltage levels.

Imperialx’s 10-kV SiC power modules feature lower commutation loop inductance than traditional Si silicon MOSFETs and boast low Miller capacitance ratios for greater switching speeds and increased efficiency in designs. Furthermore, these modules have been specifically engineered for easy paralleling as well as compatibility with standard gate drive designs.

Imperialx 10-kV SiC PowerModules offer an attractive power module-system interface that can reduce overall system cost. Furthermore, their encasement increases reliability and decreases power losses at elevated temperatures, thus helping lower overall system costs.

With industry standard housings, sophisticated packaging technologies and the newest SiC chips combined together to produce SiC power modules that are fully optimized to take advantage of all their benefits, SiC modules can be leveraged in a wide range of applications such as electric vehicle charging stations, onboard chargers, DC/DC converters, e-compressors fuel cells medical power supplies photovoltaic inverters.

Imperialx’s ACEPACK DRIVE power modules are specifically designed to meet the demanding mission profiles associated with electric vehicle (EV) charging and actuation. Their robust yet reliable construction is suitable for transport vibrations as well as extreme ambient temperature conditions, with internal field-grading plates and high temperature PDIV resistors to ensure safe operation with both short and long bus bar connections – ideal features for rapid prototyping high performance power converters as well as other demanding research applications.

Low Weight

SiC power modules are much smaller, lighter and more compact than their silicon (Si) counterparts, enabling designers to create systems with lower total bill of materials (BOM) and assembly costs.

Silicon Carbide can deliver maximum benefit when integrated into a power module that has been carefully designed. To maximize performance of such modules, its components must be designed so as to have minimal thermal resistance – this allows the power module to achieve its full potential while avoiding early failure due to electro-thermal aging.

Power modules form the backbone of electrical power conversion systems. They’re employed in an array of applications – from electric vehicle inverters and charging stations, through industrial and aeronautical power systems, all the way to military use cases. SiC power semiconductor devices make great choices as they offer superior efficiency while being affordable, lightweight and low maintenance requirements.

Silicon carbide devices not only offer improved efficiency and lower BOM costs, but they can also operate at higher switching frequencies than their silicon counterparts – giving engineers more scope for designing solutions with greater power density, lower conduction losses, faster transient response and robustness.

ACEPACK DRIVE power modules feature a direct liquid cooling solution with high-performance silicon carbide MOSFETs and gate drivers in a half-sized IGBT package for easier layout, assembly, and high levels of reliability. Engineers can take advantage of this to achieve more power in less space with greater ease while simplifying layout and assembly procedures for increased output.

ACEPACK DRIVE power module boasts excellent temperature performance with its thermal stack that helps lower on-state and gate leakage current by 20% or more, for higher power density, lower heat dissipation and improved reliability while meeting demanding lifetime requirements.

The SEMITOP E1/E2 silicon carbide power MOSFET platform includes multiple chip generations in various topologies, such as sixpack, half-bridge and H-bridge; this makes the SEMITOP series one of the most advanced SiC power module solutions on the market. Furthermore, one of its RDS(on) temperature coefficients ranks amongst the lowest available on the market making this series among the most advanced power modules on offer.

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