Silicon Carbide (SiC)

Silicon Carbide SiC

Silicon Carbide (SiC) for a more sustainable future

Following several years of intense R&D surrounding silicon carbide, ST introduced the first SiC diodes in 2004, began producing the first SiC MOSFETs in 2009, and commenced mass production in 2014. Recently, ST has introduced 1200V MOSFET and power Schottky diode products to complement the 650V versions.

ST has developed a reliable and robust SiC supply chain and continues to improve the quality of the material and manufacturing processes to deliver competitive advantages and satisfy the ever-growing supply and performance requirements surrounding EVs, solar installationsindustrial motor drives, and power supplies.

Advantages of SiC power devices

Specific advantages for electric vehicles:

  • 20% reduction in the total cost of ownership
  • Longer driving range for e-cars (> 600 km with SiC)
  • E-Car weight reduction (150-200 kg on an average EV)
  • Faster charging and less stress on batteries

Higher performance and voltage operation

  • 50% lower losses at five times the frequency
  • Short recovery time of MOSFET intrinsic body diode 
  • Faster switching capability and increased robustness compared to silicon devices
  • Unrivaled specific on-resistance
  • Improved energy efficiency
  • High thermal conductivity

Higher operating frequency

  • Lower switching losses, excellent diode switching performance
  • Smaller, lighter systems

Safer and higher operating temperatures

  • Operating temperature up to 200°C junction (limited only by the package)
  • Reduces cooling requirements, therefore improving miniaturization and lifetime

Easy to drive

  • Fully compatible with standard gate drivers
  • Simpler design for reduced BOM and shorter time to market<

Read our whitepaper and learn how the unique properties of wide bandgap materials improve application performance.

What exactly is silicon carbide (SiC)?

Silicon carbide (SiC) is a wide bandgap material with many intrinsic advantages over conventional silicon.  MOSFETs manufactured in SiC technology can operate at far higher temperatures and higher voltages without compromising on-resistance. They can also work at higher switching frequencies, allowing less bulky passive components.

Comparison of the electrical and thermal properties of silicon, silicon carbide, and gallium nitride

To find out more about Silicon Carbide technology watch the video

碳化硅

碳化硅(SiC)是一种宽带隙材料,与硅相比,具有许多优点,例如,工作温度更高,散热性能得到改善,开关和导通损耗更低。 不过,宽带隙材料比硅基材料的量产难度更高。

碳化硅特性

silicon carbide vs silicon

碳化硅的优点

sic power schottky diode and sic mosfet

更高的性能和工作电压

  • 功率损失极低
  • 本征SiC体二极管(MOSFET)(4象限开关操作)
  • 开关比硅更快,更可靠
  • 在击穿电压相同的条件下,芯片尺寸更小
  • 能效更高
  • 导热性高

更高的工作频率

  • 开关损耗更低,二极管开关性能出色
  • 更小、更轻量化的系统

更高的工作温度

  • 工作节温最高200°C
  • 散热要求降低,可用于轻量化系统,延长使用寿命

容易驱动

  • 完全兼容标准栅极驱动器
  • 设计更简单

ST与碳化硅

意法半导体从1996年开始从事碳化硅技术研发。在半导体市场推出一项新技术,质量高、寿命长,成本有竞争力是基本要求。意法半导体战胜了这种宽带隙材料的量产挑战,于2004年开始生产其首款SiC二极管。2009年,意法半导体的第一款 SiC MOSFET投产,此后又增加了1200V的SiC MOSFET和功率肖特基二极管,以完善原来的650V产品组合。

随着市场竞争愈演愈烈,基础材料的成本不断降低,碳化硅的供应链变得越来越稳健。意法半导体一直在努力改善材料和工艺质量。随着材料和基于SiC技术的产品 变得更加成熟,意法半导体研制出正在成为汽车电气化的关键推动力的汽车级SiC功率器件。

意法半导体的6英寸碳化硅晶圆于2017年投产,生产规模扩大有助于降低芯片成本,提高市场供应量,满足日益增多的SiC应用的需求(包括更多的太阳能逆变器、工业电机驱动器、家用电器和电源适配器)。

SiC Silicon Carbide wafers

若想更多地了解碳化硅技术,请观看视频。

SiC Silicon Carbide video