14 July 2022
ROHM’s fourth-generation SiC MOSFETs to be used in SEMIKRON’s eMPack power modules for EVs
After collaborating for over ten years on implementing silicon carbide (SiC) inside power modules, the latest fourth generation of SiC MOSFETs of ROHM Semiconductor of Kyoto, Japan has recently been fully qualified for automotive use in the eMPack modules of SEMIKRON of Nuremberg, Germany.
SEMIKRON also says that it has secured a billion-Euro contract to supply its eMPack power modules to a major German car-maker, beginning in 2025. The firm developed a fully sintered assembly and connection technology ‘Direct Pressed Die’ (DPD), which enables extremely compact, scalable and reliable traction inverters. The eMPack module technology has been specially designed for SiC-based converters of medium and high power in order to fully exploit the properties of silicon carbide. In addition, SEMIKRON provides evaluation boards for eMPack that incorporate ROHM’s gate driver ICs, helping customers to shorten the time required for evaluation and adoption. In the future, SEMIKRON also plans to use ROHM’s IGBTs in modules for industrial applications.
Picture: SEMIKRON’s CEO & CTO Karl-Heinz Gaubatz (left), and CSO Peter Sontheimer (right), with ROHM Semiconductor GmbH’s president Wolfram Harnack (center).
“Thanks to ROHM’s SiC technology, SEMIKRON’s innovative eMPack-family of power modules is ready to make a significant contribution to reducing emissions through e-mobility,” says SEMIKRON’s CEO & chief technology officer Karl-Heinz Gaubatz. “ROHM’s SiC technology provides more efficiency, performance and reliability in automotive and also industrial applications,” he comments.
Picture: SEMIKRON’s eMPack power module.
ROHM says that it produces SiC components in-house in a vertically integrated manufacturing system, enabling a constant market supply. The firm’s production subsidiary SiCrystal in Nuremberg, Germany, plans to strongly grow its SiC wafer capacities and human resources, in order to produce several 100,000 substrates a year.
“SEMIKRON has selected ROHM as SiC supplier for the automotive-qualified eMPack. This partnership leads to a competitive solution for inverter application use inside electrical vehicles,” says Isao Matsumoto, president & CEO of ROHM Co Ltd. “ROHM offers a broad portfolio of SiC devices – from chips to packages,” he adds. “As the demand for SiC will continue to grow, ROHM will accelerate further investment and product development based on the technology we have cultivated as a leading SiC manufacturer. In addition, our company will continue to propose solutions and deliver customer support.”
ROHM was first to mass produce SiC MOSFETs. Its fourth generation of SiC MOSFETs provides low ON-resistance with improved short-circuit withstand time. These characteristics contribute significantly to extend the driving range and miniaturize the batteries of EVs when they are used in traction inverters. The firm hence develops energy-saving SiC devices that reduce environmental impact.
Both companies aim to continue to contribute to automotive technology innovations by providing optimal power solutions that meet market needs through the fusion of ROHM’s device/control technologies and SEMIKRON’s module technologies that can optimally combine them.
SEMIKRON manufactures power modules and systems primarily in the medium output range (about 2kW up to 10MW). Products are at the heart of energy-efficient motor drives and industrial automation systems. Further application areas include power supplies, renewable energies (wind and solar power) and electric vehicles (private cars, vans, buses, lorries, forklift trucks, and more). SEMIKRON says that its power electronic products enable customers to develop smaller, more energy-efficient power electronic systems, which in turn reduce the global energy demand.