14 September 2021
GaN Systems signs capacity agreement with BMW
GaN Systems Inc of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (a fabless developer of gallium nitride-based power switching semiconductors for power conversion and control applications) has signed a comprehensive capacity agreement with BMW Group for GaN Systems’ automotive-grade GaN power transistors, which increase the efficiency and power density of critical applications in electric vehicles (EVs).
GaN power semiconductors are a key ingredient to achieve the small size, light weight and high efficiency required in the next generation of high-performance electric vehicles. Under the terms of the agreement, GaN Systems will provide capacity for multiple applications in series production. The guaranteed volumes by GaN Systems are a key building block for reliability in the supply chain for automotive players like BMW, the firm says.
“Electric vehicles represent the future of transportation, and we are delighted to continue to support BMW with our design and production capacity,” says GaN Systems’ CEO Jim Witham. “This multi-$100m agreement demonstrates BMW’s commitment to innovation and sustainability.”
BMW’s relationship with GaN Systems began more than four years ago when BMW’s engineers found that small-size, lightweight, low-cost onboard chargers (OBCs), DC/DC converters, and traction inverters were enabled by GaN. This led to investment from BMW’s venture capital firm BMW i Ventures to support and accelerate automotive qualification of the GaN technology.
“The close collaboration among GaN Systems and BMW’s engineers has helped to solidify the technology for automotive series production, resulting in the most advanced GaN power transistors in the marketplace today,” says Kasper Sage, managing partner BMW i Ventures. “As electric vehicles become more prominent, the demand for critical semiconductor components is only going to increase, thereby making strategic partnerships with suppliers like GaN Systems even more important.”