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Silicon power MOSFETs have not kept pace with the evolutionary changes in the power electronics industry where factors such as efficiency, power density, and smaller form factors are the main demands of the community. The power electronics industry has seen the theoretical limit of silicon MOSFETs reached and now needs to move to a new element. Gallium Nitride or GaN is a highly mobile semiconductor electron semiconductor (HEMT) that is proving to be a real added value in meeting new applications.
Power Electronics News
March 25, 2020
eGaN FETs and ICs enable very high-density power converter design, owing to their compact size, ultra-fast switching, and low on-resistance. The limiting factor for output power in most high-density converters is junction temperature, which prompts the need for more effective thermal design. The chip-scale packaging of eGaN FETs and ICs offer six-sided cooling, with effective heat extraction from the bottom, top, and sides of the die. This article presents a high-performance thermal solution to extend the output current capability of eGaN-based converters.
In recent years, GaN-based power conversion has increased in popularity due to the inherent benefits of eGaN FETs over conventional Si transistors. Migrating a converter design from Si to GaN offers many system-level improvements, which require consideration of all the components in that system. This trend has subsequently spurred a growth in the ecosystem of power electronics that support GaN-based designs.
Power Systems Designs
By Edward A. Jones, Michael de Rooij, and David Reusch
This scientist got his Ph.D 40 years ago who saved the world's 15% energy consumption at one time. He is continuing his journey of innovations now in discovering silicon's replacement material for humankind.
My father always taught me that the true worth of an individual is measured based on their contribution to society. As I entered graduate school in 1975 I knew my passion was in the field of semiconductors, and I felt my best contribution to society would come from finding a successor to silicon. I did my graduate work in Gallium Arsenide, but realized by the time I received my PhD in 1977 that Gallium Arsenide’s prospects were limited as a semiconductor due to the basic materials properties, I went to work applying everything I learned to making better devices in silicon.
June 15, 2017
Gallium Nitride (GaN) FETS are poised to replace silicon power devices in voltage regulators and DC-DC power supplies. Their switching speeds are significantly faster and their RDS(on) is lower than silicon MOSFETS. That can lead to higher power efficiency power sources, which is good for all of us. If you're designing power circuits with GaN devices, you need a grasp of the device's switching speed.
Gallium nitride has long been known to have useful properties when it comes to electronic components. Even so, its application has largely been confined to more exotic areas of the industry, particularly rf transistors.
But GaN is beginning to find application in what could be considered the mainstream, with some of its proponents suggesting its arrival could mark the beginning of the end for the traditional power mosfet.
By: Graham Pitcher
December 13, 2011
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