Nexperia Announces Next-Gen GaN TechnologyJune 18, 2020 by Antonio Anzaldua Jr.
Nexperia highlights the next-generation, 650-volt gallium nitride (GaN) technology for automotive, 5G, and datacenter applications.
Nexperia has launched its second generation of GaN devices.
The company is targeting high-performance application segments including hybrid and all-electric vehicles (EV), data centers, telecom infrastructure, industrial automation, and high-end power supplies. Nexperia claims that its GaN-on-silicon process in upholding high quality, reliability, and scalability without changing fabrication machinery as theses wafers can be processed in existing silicon fabrication facilities.
Nexperia power semiconductors can provide the answer to many automotive system power problems. Image used courtesy of Nexperia.
In 2018, Nexperia entered the world of GaN devices by presenting a power field-effect transistor (FET) that is robust in design and highly capable of being at the forefront of automotive, communication infrastructure, and industrial markets. Now Nexperia is showcasing the next-generation of improved GaN FET devices, the 650V GAN041-650WSB, and the CCPAK1212. These devices achieve superior switching, stability, and optimal cooling, ideal for automotive applications.
The GAN041- 650WSB
The GAN041-650WSB has the key features of ultra-low reverse recovery charge and low total resistance for drain-source of 35 mΩ RDS(on). Having low RDS(on) is critical for the overall system since it is possible for the operating temperatures to rise which will increase the total drain-source resistance.
Ideal for hard and soft-switching converters for industrial and datacom power. Image used courtesy of Nexperia.
The GAN041 is neatly packaged in the TO-247 FET shown in the image above. This power FET allows for devices to operate at high frequencies due to the high-breakdown voltage and high current carrying characteristics. GaN-based semiconductors such as this 650-volt FET offer high-performance benefits compared to silicon (Si) because of the material’s wide bandgap, high-heat capacity, and better thermal conductivity.
The copper-clip package technology from Nexperia has packaged over 15 years of robust and efficient design into the new CCPAK1212. Leading the way in Nexperia’s GaN portfolio, CCPAK is able to provide optimized thermal and electrical performance with simplified design to eliminate the need for external drivers.
CCPAK1212 has a compact footprint of only 12 x 12 mm and a low package height of 2.5 mm. Image used courtesy of Nexperia.
The CCPAK has 3 times lower inductances than standard silicon-based packages, bottom or top side internal cooling capabilities, and flexible leads for temperature cycling reliability. This GaN FET is ideal for EV onboard charging, DC-DC converters, solar (PV) inverters, battery storage, and data center servers.
Nexperia provided power MOSFETs specifically for automotive applications. They are used strategically and elegantly throughout the engine control unit (ECU). At the core of the system is Nexperia’s ARM MCU which carries out essential functions such as active safety, automotive lighting, battery management, and the vehicle’s HVAC.
Nexperia’s 650-volt GaN FETs reduce component count and by having a wide bandgap material, there is a higher electric field, mobility, and controls reliability. The power FETs are critical for power management, brake assist, traction control, electronic stability control, power steering, and lane detection control.
Side-by-side comparison of Si and GaN devices being tested for low reverse recovery loss. Image used courtesy of Nexperia.
Developers such as Nexperia are providing GaN over Si devices which have allowed EVs to have an Increase in vehicle range, fast charging abilities, and reduced power dissipation. As we continue to see the development and use of GaN technology, there could be a growing demand for automotive-qualified devices, including surface-mount versions, the ongoing electrification of the GaN FETs.
GaN FETs For The Future of EVs
For many semiconductor manufacturers, only developing GaN-based devices can be an industrial change too costly to make. However, some studies in GaN technology allows developers to grow thick GaN epitaxial layers on Si substrate to achieve a GaN solution without reinventing the wheel at their Si-based fabrication labs. GaN-based devices are completing the journey from invention to industrialization and developers are looking at GaN technology with the potential to be the preferred technology for battery-electric vehicles.