SiC for automotive applications

Gearing up for a new generation of power electronics

Demand for plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles (xEV) continues to rise. These vehicles are packed full of power electronics – most of which are currently based on silicon. However, the latest xEV designs call for advances in efficiency and power density. Silicon carbide (SiC) is emerging as the material of choice to overcome the performance plateau of silicon. Highlights such as low switching losses, high temperature capability and high switching frequency, make it ideal to meet best xEV requirements. SiC based solutions are promised to be more efficient, lighter and compacter than conventional applications.

CoolSiC Automotive Schottky diodes are ready for production!

The CoolSiC™ Schottky diode family is now ready for current and future on-board charger (OBC) applications in hybrid and electric vehicles. Infineon has designed the diodes specifically to meet the high requirements of the automotive industry regarding reliability, quality and performance.

The new product family is based on Infineon’s 5th generation Schottky Diode, which has been further improved to meet the reliability requirements demanded by the automotive industry. Thanks to a new passivation layer concept, this is the most robust automotive device available in the market regarding humidity and corrosion. Moreover, because it is based on a 110µm thin wafer technology, it shows one of the best figures of merit (Qc x Vf) in its category. A lower figure of merit implies lower power losses and therefore a better electrical performance.

Compared to the traditional Silicon Rapid diode, the CoolSiC Automotive Schottky Diode can improve the efficiency of an OBC by one percentage point over all load conditions. This leads to a potential reduction of 200kg of CO2 emissions over the typical lifetime of an electric car, based on the German energy mix.

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Synergized expertise

Number one in automotive power semiconductors worldwide, Infineon has developed one of the broadest technology portfolio available on the market. The company has developed expertise in silicon, SiC, gallium nitride (GaN), complemented by innovative packaging and gate driver solutions. Infineon is now leveraging over five decades of experience in both high-voltage components and automotive semiconductors to bring the benefits of SiC technology to the automotive world.

Technology portfolio

Infineon will actively drive down the cost/performance ratio of SiC and accelerate its market introduction. Building on a recognized expertise in automotive systems, Infineon will support his partners to design the next generation xEV that take full advantage of the performance capabilities of SiC, in order to create additional value for its customers.

Once Infineon is ready for an open market approach, customers can look forward to compact and highly efficient SiC devices offering performance and efficiency gains of up to 10 percent for a variety of driving scenarios.