Cambridge GaN Devices Receives $9.5 Million in Series A FundingMarch 04, 2021 by Stephanie Leonida
Cambridge GaN Devices receive substantial funding to expand its GaN-based product portfolio and double its staff.
Cambridge GaN Devices Ltd (CGD) is a fabless semiconductor company that first began its journey as a spin-off from the University of Cambridge Department of Engineering in 2016. The company was co-founded by Prof. Florin Udrea and Dr. Giorgia Longobardi.
CGD centers its attention on developing technology for power semiconductor devices and uses gallium nitride (GaN) on silicon substrates. Recently, CGD announced its reception of $9.5 million in Series A funding. Investors backing CGD in the expansion of its power device product portfolio include IQ Capital, Parkwalk Advisors and BGF, Foresight Williams, Cambridge Enterprise, Martlet Capital, Cambridge Angels, and Cambridge Capital Group.
Image used courtesy of CGD
GaN is known to be a hardy and mechanically stable wide bandgap semiconductor which exhibits a higher breakdown strength, higher thermal conductivity, faster-switching speed, and lower ON-resistance when compared with silicon.
Several substrates can be used to grow GaN crystals including sapphire, silicon carbide (SiC), and silicon (Si). When compared with silicon transistors, GaN transistors developed by CGD power design engineers are over 100 times faster, lose 5 – 10 times less power, and are 4 times smaller.
CGD’s GaN Technology
At present, CGD is developing a range of GaN transistors that will be specifically outfitted to suit applications within consumer and industrial Switch Mode Power Supply (SMPS), lighting, data centers, and automotive HEV/EV market segments. The company believes that the higher energy efficiency, greater usability, and compact nature of its devices will be key factors in the replacement of silicon within such applications. The procurement of this latest investment will likely enable CGD to continue innovative technological developments in GaN power devices, expand its influence in existing markets, and infiltrate other markets.
In a recent press release, the CEO and founder of CGD, Dr. Giorgia Longobardi, commented: “This latest round of investment is a great recognition of our success to date, with new and existing investors confirming the strength of our technology. Since 2016, CGD has grown significantly and we are thrilled to be in a position to deliver several products to market, following decades of industry-leading research in the reliability of power devices. This investment will allow us to supplement our experienced team with additional experts and expand our markets globally, creating more sustainable electronics worldwide.”
A prototype of a half-bridge module with CGD's 650 V GaN. Image used courtesy of CGD
In the same press release, Managing Partner at IQ Capital, Ed Stacey, commented: “We are proud to support the CGD team as they build on their core technology, from a strong base of academic research and IP, to create the world’s best GaN power devices for a wide range of applications. This highly experienced team has incredible potential to disrupt the electronics industry with new devices that will unlock commercial and environmental gains for suppliers and customers.”
Other key investors backing CGD and development partners expressed their enthusiasm for the opportunity to support and work with the company. They wish to support CGD in commercializing its disruptive technology and believe that it has the potential to increase power device performance, reduce costs, and make a significant impact on power consumption.