VisIC and AB Mikroelektronik GmbH to Develop EV Battery Disconnect Switch
The high voltage, solid state switch will exploit VisIC’s D-mode D3GaN technology, specifically developed for automotive applications.
This collaboration will combine VisIC’s expertise in GaN-based technology for fast switching in safety-critical applications with AB Mikroelektronik's experience with battery disconnect switches.
AB Mikroelektronik’s 48V solid-state battery disconnect. Image courtesy of VisIC
In an electronic vehicle (EV), the possibility of a short circuit in the high voltage border requires an immediate response, due to the enormous damage that the uncontrolled power that the vehicle’s battery would otherwise cause. It is fundamental to the safety and function of the EV that the condition must be instantaneously registered, and that the current flow into the short is turned off with no delay.
“We are happy to collaborate with AB Mikroelektronik, which is a major player in high power automotive applications with a strong experience in solid-state battery disconnect switches. This is a big advantage in developing the next step for a 400V battery switch” said Mr. Ran Soffer, VisIC VP Sales & Marketing. “our effort to constantly serve our customers is raising the bar for high voltage, high current solutions for the EV market. Our focus for the EV industry using the D3GaN technology is enabling the future electric-drive technology to be aligned with the market needs to reduce the electric drive cost and improve its efficiency with a reliable high voltage automotive-grade technology”.
VisIC’s D-mode D3GaN Technology
As described by VisIC, D-mode and E-mode are the two major types of power GaN technology. The company was an early adopter of D-mode technology and holds that it is the only technology that succeeds in the demanding, high-power automotive world. This is thanks to its high gate drive safety margin and high immunity to gate drive noise.
A next step, VisIC’s D3GaN technology allows for simple and easy paralleling, a major advantage for inverters and other high power applications.
Two examples of VisIC’s D3GaN power switch are the V18N65A and the V22TC65S1A. The units feature similar pinouts, and both feature VDS’s of 650 volts as well as total gate charges of 41nC. They are available in packages fully isolated to 2.5KV
The V33TC65S1A D3GaN Power Switch. Image courtesy of VisIC
Other features include:
|RDS(ON)||Drain Current, Continuous||Drain Current, Pulse|
|V18N65A||18mΩ||80 Amps||180 amps|
|V22TC65S1A||22 mΩ||100 amps||250 amps|
The Right Combination
VisIC’s existing D³GaN power switches feature extremely low switching times. That, and its fast short circuit detection (FSCD) circuit are two building blocks that will be fundamental to the realization of a high current, high voltage battery disconnect switches.
The other half of the coin is AB Mikroelektronik’s experience in 48 volt high current integrations employing thick-film aluminum circuit boards. This will afford, as per Dr. Louis Costa, AB Mikroelektronik GmbH Head of Advanced Development, a “fast transfer from existing solutions for 48V battery solid-state switches to a high voltage prototype.” He goes on to state that “We consider GaN as a promising candidate for future e-mobility applications due to its high voltage and ultrafast switching capabilities.”
About AB Mikroelektronik GmbH
AB Mikroelektronik, based in Salzburg, Austria, develops and produces advanced high-power electronics for customer-specific applications.
AB Mikroelektronik offers a wide product portfolio from electrified auxiliary units as engine control units up to DC-AC inverters for battery electrified vehicles or DC-DC converters for fuel cell-driven vehicles. Thereby a power range from some kilowatt up to more than 60 kilowatts at different voltage classes from 12 V over 48 V up to high voltage applications is covered.
About VisIC Technologies
Based in Ness Ziona, Israel, VisIC Technologies was founded in 2010 with the goal of advancing Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology into mainstream usage.
VisIC’s D3GaN era arrived with the novel Depletion-mode Direct Drive GaN technology emerging as an eminently suitable technology.