Economy driven SiC Power Electronics Technology Development supported by the ECSEL Joint Undertaking framework program funds

T. Bieniek, G. Janczyk, A. Sitnik, A. Messina
Łukasiewicz Research Network – Institute of Electron Technology,

Keywords: SiC, silicon carbide, power electronics, REACTION EU project, pilot line, ECSEL JU, Łukasiewicz Research Network, Ł-ITE, DACPOL


Electronic Components and Systems (ECS) technology is a high-growth area of industry. According the common Strategic Research Agenda by European industry associations AENEAS, ARTEMIS-IA and EPoSS involved in the ECSEL-JU, the ECS market is growing faster worldwide than any other the industry in average. Competitiveness of key European industrial domains heavily depends on the physical availability of leading edge ECS technologies such as the SiC one in the field of compound power electronic semiconductors. Therefore, the European project REACTION (first and euRopEAn siC eigTh Inches pilOt liNe) was launched to push throughout the new and a first one in the world European 200mm SiC Pilot Line. The polish cluster partners of the REACTION project: Łukasiewicz-ITE (Research) and DACPOL (SME) in cooperation with STMicroelectronics (as a project coordinator and technology operator) and some other project partners is responsible for development of the one of the project demonstrator - DC/DC modules development up to 15kW for numerous applications from UPS to electric vehicles charging station. It is expected to profit from outstanding SiC components delivered by the STMicroelectronics fabrication line in a SiC FAB developed in frame of the REACTION project support. Exploitation profile of the product is specific for DC/DC converter module supporting 10-20kW operation power to validate the effective reliability and compare exploitation results of the DC/DC converter to the performance and reliability achieved using concurrent components by outstanding global power device suppliers. The main works covers development, low volume fabrication, assembly and testing of the charging modules for battery charging station. Such modules consist of power bridges for DC/DC converters and driven power elements. As final application is the well-known piece of design work, power elements elaborated in frame of the REACTION project activities, fabricated SiC Power MOSFETs also need secure, gate drivers controlled externally by dedicated digital control modules. Schematic diagram of such a gate driver implements driving element (buffer) and at least gate separation by optoseparators or transformers. The dedicated gate driver will be designed and prototyped by Ł-ITE in discrete form. The fully integrated version of the gate driver is also feasible and if realized will be fabricated using one of European technologies available. The charger application will be developed by DACPOL in collaboration with Ł-ITE. SiC Power MOSFETs transistors will be developed and fabricated by STMicroelectronics. Full paper will cover and discuss various aspects of power electronics hardware and software solutions development with special attention focused on system, module and power-device level. The paper will present DC/DC driver development, power stage structure and gate driver development for power SiC transistors application for battery charging modules application. Available solutions will be discussed in details along with hardware implementation scenarios.