1 June 2021
ROHM’s develops 150V GaN HEMT with 8V gate breakdown voltage
Power semiconductor maker ROHM says that it has developed the industry’s highest (8V) gate breakdown voltage (rated gate-source voltage) technology for 150V gallium nitride (GaN) high-electron-mobility transistor (HEMT) devices – optimized for power supply circuits in industrial and communication equipment.
Along with mass-producing silicon carbide (SiC) devices and a variety of feature-rich silicon devices, ROHM has developed GaN devices for high-frequency operation in the medium-voltage range. Cultivating technology that increases the rated gate-source voltage has allowed ROHM to propose a wider range of power solutions for a variety of applications.
As GaN devices provide improved switching characteristics and lower ON-resistance than silicon devices, they are expected to contribute to lower power consumption and greater miniaturization of switching power supplies used in base stations and data centers. However, drawbacks that include low rated gate-source voltage and overshoot voltage exceeding the maximum rating during switching pose major challenges to device reliability.
In response, ROHM has succeeded in raising the rated gate-source voltage from the typical 6V to 8V by using an original structure. This makes it possible to both improve the design margin and increase the reliability of power supply circuits using GaN devices that require high efficiency.
ROHM says that, in addition to maximizing device performance with low parasitic inductance, it is also developing a dedicated package that facilitates mounting and delivers excellent heat dissipation, enabling easy replacement of existing silicon devices while simplifying handling during the mounting process.
Application examples are cited as: 48V input buck converter circuits for data centers and base stations; boost converter circuits for the power amplifier block of base stations; Class D audio amplifiers; and light detection & ranging (LiDAR) drive circuits and wireless charging circuits for portable devices.
Going forward, ROHM aims to accelerate the development of GaN devices based on this technology, with sample shipment planned for September.