The arrival and consistent development of MOS-controlled power semiconductor
components has helped the entire field of power electronics towards a breakthrough
regarding high power density and system efficiency. It has also improved reliability and
made economical technical solutions possible. The key technology, facilitating the wide
power range of a few tens of watts up to the region of many megawatts, has been the
IGBT (insulated gate bipolar transistor), the exceptional technical properties of which
mean that it has replaced all previous fully controllable power semiconductor
components in existing systems and opened up completely new fields of application.
However, a fundamental understanding of component technology, the requirements of
the fields of application and operation, and tried and tested designs for the drive and
protection functions, are essential for fail-safe and reliable operation across the entire
power range, and in order to take the optimisation of system costs intoaccount.
An analysis of the literature currently available reveals a large number of highly qualified
papers and books on the topic of power electronics converters, switching topologies and
systems, and several comprehensiveworks that present the semiconductor physics and
cellular structures of the major new power semiconductor components both in theory
and from the technological and realisation point of view.
What makes this book unique is that it is tailor-made to fill the gap that still existed
between semiconductor physics and power electronics systems technology, and
provides valuable support to users of these components.
Given the work done in this area over the last twenty years, the two authors, who were
involved in applying and spreading this new technology, deserve special commendation:
They did not balk at the effort of putting all the knowledge gathered so far in readable
form. By fortunate coincidence, both authors have been involved in developing
innovative application guidelines for the whole spectrum of power IGBTs and are
familiar with – indeed helped to shape – major drive and protection designs,
measurementmethods for high performance IGBTs andmany applications.
This book will provide students of power electronics with valuable information about the
main contemporary power semiconductor components and their application while
development engineers targeting power electronic converters will find all the essentials
of selecting, dimensioning and applying IGBT modules laid out clearly and
I would like to thank the authors for their hard work and expressmy hope that this book
will become a new milestone and a standard work in the development of energy
Munich, summer 2010
Professor Leo Lorenz
Member of theAcademy of Science