New Industry Products

GaN Systems Releases Two 650V Evaluation Cards

January 29, 2021 by Gary Elinoff

The GS-EVB-HB-66508B-RN and the GS-EVB-HB-66516T-RN are half bridge daughter cards that can handle 3kW and 6kW, respectively

The new devices are said to be the industry’s first to offer programmable source current for adjustable turn-on slew rate as well as programmable over current protection with adjustable thresholds.


The GS-EVB-HB-66516T-RN.
The GS-EVB-HB-66516T-RN. Image courtesy of GaN Systems


A Partnership with Renesas

Both cards include Renesas’ RAA226110 low-side GaN FET driver, and as stated by Philip Chesley, Vice President of the Industrial and Communications Business Unit at Renesas, “Renesas is committed to the development of innovative power products that support GaN transistors.” he goes on to state that “One example is our new RAA226110 low-side GaN FET driver, which provides all of the features customers are looking for in a high-performance driver.” 

Paul Wiener, Vice President of Strategic Marketing at GaN Systems, takes the commitment as an affirmation of GaN technology.  “GaN transistors have established themselves as a fundamental building block in power electronics. The introduction of Renesas’ low-side GaN FET driver with its best-in-class features and performance are a confirmation that GaN transistors have become the preferred tool of choice for power design engineers,” 


Evaluation Board Basics

The GS-EVB-HB-66508B-RN and the GS-EVB-HB-66516T-RN are evaluation boards. They include everything needed, including isolated power supplies, to form a functional half bridge power stage.  

They also include two GaN Systems 650V GaN E-mode transistors to be studied. These are  GS66516Ts and GS66508Bs for the GS-EVB-HB-66516T-RN and the GS-EVB-HB-66508B-RN evaluation boards, respectively.

With these evaluation boards, essentially power stages, designers will be able to evaluate the GaN E-modes’ performance in any half bridge-based topology. They work well with GaN Systems’ universal mother board the GS665MB-EVB. 


The GS665MV-EVB Universal Mother Board with one of the evaluation boards plugged in
The GS665MV-EVB Universal Mother Board with one of the evaluation boards plugged in. Image courtesy of GaN Systems 


Use of the universal motherboard is not mandatory, as users can opt to design an equivalent.


About Renesas’ RAA226110

This device plays a pivotal role in the makeup of GaN System’s new evaluation Boards

The RAA226110 is a low-side driver specifically designed to drive enhancement-mode GaN FETs in both isolated and non-isolated topologies. In order to satisfy requirements for inverting and non-inverting gate drives, it features both inverting and non-inverting inputs.

The RAA226110 provides 5.8V gate drive voltage generated by an internal regulator in order to prevent it from exceeding the maximum gate-source rating of enhancement-mode GaN FETs.

The gate drive voltage features UVLO protection to ensure the GaN FET is in an OFF state whenever the gate drive voltage falls below the UVLO threshold.

The RAA226110 operates with a supply voltage from 6.5V to 18V, but its inputs  can withstand voltages up to 18V regardless of the supply voltage. This allows the inputs to be connected directly to most PWM controllers. 

The unit operates over a temperature range of -40 to +125°C and is offered in a 16-QFN package. 


The Evaluation Board’s Feature:

  • Integrated VGS regulation at 2MHz fsw
  • Adjustable over current protection, programmable with adjustable thresholds to 40mV, 80mV, and 120mV
  • Differential current sensing
  • Programmable source current (300 mA to 2 amps) for adjustable turn-on slew rate
  • Support for uni-polar or bi-polar GaN gate drive 
  • 0 V turn off voltage 
  • Current shunt position for switching characterization testing 



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