Improved SiC and GaN Device and Module Performance, Packaging, Reliability

As wide bandgap technologies mature, the confidence of the power electronics community in these technologies will increase as their reliability and quality continued to improve. Key to this process, as noted by PowerAmerica’s members in the PowerAmerica Technology Roadmap, is gaining a better understanding of degradation/failure mechanisms under harsh conditions (i.e., high voltages and/or high temperatures) as well as sources of product quality issues. It also requires generating high-quality data using advanced testing methods, developing standards, and effectively communicating reliability best practices and quality information to end users. The reliable performance of power devices is highly influenced by factors such as structure, level of defects (e.g., basal plane dislocation [BPD]), processing/manufacturing conditions, packaging, and device degradation from harsh operating conditions (e.g., high-temperature, high-voltage, high-frequency operation).

This session will address:
Device-level challenges: The GaN device community currently faces the challenge of developing high-frequency power converters and improved normally off (i.e., enhancement-mode) devices. Challenges in SiC devices include improving channel mobility with increased channel density and reduced channel lengths, reducing EMI with reduced parasitics, and optimizing gate drivers for specific application environments.
Module and packaging challenges: Key module and packaging challenges include the need to improve high-voltage insulation, thermal management, partial discharge, and EMI to enable high-performance modules (e.g., double-sided cooled power modules operating at a higher junction temperature (Tj,max: 175°C–200°C), and high-performance discrete packages that can operate at higher temperatures and voltages.
Qualification standards challenges: Because WBG PE technologies are relatively new, there is high demand for qualification standards for PE technologies similar to the Automotive Electronics Council’s Qualification (AECQ) standards developed for automotive electronics or the Joint Electron Device Engineering Council’s (JEDEC) standards for electronics.

Session Chairs:

Victor Veliadis is Deputy Executive Director and CTO of PowerAmerica, which is a U.S Department of Energy wide bandgap power electronics public-private Manufacturing Institute. Dr. Veliadis manages a budget in excess of $30 million per year that he strategically allocates to over 35 industrial, University, and National-Laboratory projects, to enable US leadership in WBG power electronics manufacturing, work force development, job creation, and energy savings.
Dr. Veliadis has given over 60 invited resentations/keynotes/tutorials, and is an IEEE Fellow and an IEEE EDS Distinguished Lecturer. He has 25 issued US patents, 3 book chapters, and 115 peer-reviewed technical publications to his credit. Dr. Veliadis is also Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering at North Carolina State University. He received the Ph.D. degree from Johns Hopkins University in 1995 in Electrical and Computer Engineering. Prior to being named Deputy Executive Director and CTO of Power America in 2016, Dr. Veliadis spent 21 years in the semiconductor industry where his technical work included design, fabrication, and testing of 1-12 kV SiC SITs, JFETs, MOSFETs, Thyristors, and JBS and PiN diodes.

Jim LeMunyon is the Director of Membership and Industry Relations at PowerAmerica. He is responsible for facilitating PowerAmerica’s member-led initiatives and implementation of the organization’s value proposition, in addition to member recruitment. Mr. LeMunyon was co-founder of Sterling Semiconductor, the second SiC substrate companies in the United States, which is now a unit of Dow, Inc. He is also a former CEO of Hexatech, an aluminum nitride semiconductor company. In addition to his career in business, Mr. LeMunyon has served on the adjunct faculty of George Mason University and as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Export Administration at the U.S. Department of Commerce. He earned a B.S. in physics and mathematics from Valparaiso University and an M.S. in meteorology from the University of Wisconsin.


Timothy Monday, X-FAB

Pete Losee, United Silicon Carbide

Daniel Martin, Wolfspeed

Rick Eddins, GE Aviation