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    Which is better? SiC or GaN?

    Proper device selection ensures optimal performance

    By Alix Paultre | June 17, 2017

     

    It is all well and good to point out that wide-bandgap materials like silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) are superior performers to legacy silicon, but what does that really mean to the designer? What application spaces can best benefit from the next generation of semiconductors? There is a difference between frequency-oriented applications like RF and LiDAR and energy-oriented applications like power electronics; wide-bandgap devices, properly chosen, can serve both well.

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      What is the difference between GaN and SiC?

      Each material has its pluses and minuses

      By Alix Paultre | June 5, 2017

      Characteristics of SiC, GaN and Silicon

      The wide-bandgap revolution is still in its infancy, but we have finally reached the point where promise is being followed by product. Every major embedded manufacturer now has a wide-bandgap play, if only to demonstrate to the marketplace that they are players. Partnerships between the technology developers and mainstream semiconductor companies are coupling disruptive tech with trusted sources to ease migration pains.

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        Why use wide-bandgap semiconductors?

        They're not one-for-one replacements for silicon

        By Alix Paultre | June 1, 2017

        Packaging is a critical issue in wide-bandgap semiconductor development.

        Buzz about the promise of wide-bandgap semiconductors abounds, but engineers are only just starting to look to them as real solutions, not mere hype. There are still birthing pains, but mainstream acceptance of the technology appears imminent.

        Still, it is relevant to ask why wide-bandgap is such a disruptive technology.

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          Empowering the green revolution with wide-bandgap semiconductors

          Wide-bandgap semiconductors outperform traditional Silicon

          By Alix Paultre | May 23, 2017

          The electronic design industry is in the midst of a near-perfect storm of disruptive sea change, one sending ripples and waves large and small through our entire economy. Inter-related yet distinct, these challenges come from recent technological advances being commercialized and entering the marketplace. New topologies, methodologies, and materials have created opportunities, markets, and application spaces.

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            GaN transistors to demo power efficiency at APEC 2107 show in Florida

            By Majeed Ahmad | March 21, 2017

            photo_of_gaN_module

            TI’s GaN-based LMG5200 module for 48V-to-POL applications in datacenters (shown on top) uses eGaN power FETs from EPC.

            Gallium nitride (GaN) chips are going to have a show of power — and how they can boost power density and energy efficiency — at the Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC) being held on 26-30 March 2017 in Tampa, Florida.

            Texas Instruments will showcase how its GaN-based 48 to POL half-bridge controllers can facilitate greater energy efficiency at the AC-to-processor stage.

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              Guest blog: Electric vehicles: less power to the driver

              February 24, 2017

              By Nagarajan Sridhar

              A couple of months ago, I got a chance to test-drive a new autonomous vehicle. My general observation: it was a computer on wheels! Because of the traction motor (a key characteristic of electric vehicles [EVs]), it was totally silent, with no whirring sound from the integrated circuit-based engine. Also memorable was experiencing autopilot mode, which is the predecessor to the autonomous driverless vehicular concept.

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                Silicon carbide on the road to automotive electrification

                By Majeed Ahmad | January 2, 2017

                 

                Higher voltages and currents increase power density while reducing switching losses. Image courtesy of Infineon Technologies.

                The automotive industry has long been focusing on the higher efficiency of the combustion engine and electrification of the drivetrain in hybrid and fully electric vehicles to meet CO2 emission goals. Now we finally see a tipping point with a greater availability of silicon carbide (SiC) chips that offer extremely low power losses and higher temperature resistance.

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                  Materials breakthrough will supercharge wide-bandgap semiconductors

                  Screen Shot 2016-09-03 at 12.28.23 PMIn a significant breakthrough, materials scientists at Pennsylvania State University have synthesized two-dimensional gallium nitride for the first time ever using a graphene encapsulation said to give the structure “superb electronic properties and strength to the resulting flat gallium nitride.” 

                  The new materials will ultimately be used to create wide bandgap transistors and similar semiconductor devices designed to improve electrical energy efficiency.