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sic Mosfets ROHM's new 1200V SiC MOSFETs for automotive systems

From Luke James

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ROHM has recently announced its 4th generation of 1200V SiC MOSFETs optimised for automotive power train systems and power supplies for industrial equipment.

(Source: gemeinfrei / Pexels)

In recent years, the growth and rapid development of next-generation electric vehicles (EVs) and their technologies has accelerated the development of smaller, lighter, and more efficient electrical systems. Among all the challenges currently faced by the automotive industry, it is improving efficiency while simultaneously decreasing the size of the main inverter that is one of the most prominent.

In addition, the capacity of EVs’ onboard batteries are increasing to increase the cruising range of EVs. In conjunction with this, the use of higher voltage batteries is progressing to meet the demand for shorter charging times.

Solving these challenges

Now, ROHM may have the answer. The company recently announced its “cutting-edge” 4th Generation 1200V SiC MOSFETs that have been designed with optimisations for automotive power train systems and power supplies for industrial equipment.

It all started in 2010 when ROHM began mass-producing SiC power devices, far ahead of the industry at the time. Since then, the company has strengthened its position as a market leader with a renowned product line-up that now includes AEC-Q101-qualified products, enabling the company to hold a large market share for automotive on-board chargers (OBCs).

Improving the trade-off relationship

For power semiconductors, there is often a trade-off relationship between lower ON resistance and short-circuit withstand time. This is required to achieve a balance for achieving lower power losses in SiC MOSFETs.

Now, with the 4th Generation of SiC MOSFETs, ROHM has been able to improve this trade-off and reduce ON resistance per unit area by as much as 40% over conventional products without sacrificing short-circuit withstand time. In addition, ROHM has significantly reduced parasitic capacitance, making it possible to achieve 50% lower switching losses over previous generations of SiC MOSFETs.

In 2015, ROHM began mass production of the industry’s first trench-type SiC MOSFET utilising a unique structure. Today, ROHM’s new 4th Generation SiC MOSFETs can deliver “the industry’s lowest” ON resistance with high-speed switching performance thanks to an improved trench structure.

One of the "Key Features" is the reduced ON resistance by 40%.
One of the "Key Features" is the reduced ON resistance by 40%.
(Source: Rohm Semiconductor)

Generally speaking, lower ON resistance leads to higher parasitic capacitances in MOSFETs. This can inhibit the inherent high-speed switching characteristics of a SiC. However, ROHM claims to have achieved 50% lower switching loss over conventional products by reducing gate-drain capacitance.

All this together enables greater miniaturisation potential and lower power consumption across a variety of applications, namely automotive and industry. From June 2020, bare chip samples are available, and the company plans to introduce packages in the near future.


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