12 January 2023
onsemi’s EliteSiC MOSFETs being used in Ampt’s DC string optimizers
Power semiconductor IC supplier onsemi of Phoenix, AZ, USA and Ampt LLC of Fort Collins, CO, USA, which provides DC optimizers for large-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar and energy storage systems, have announced a collaboration to meet the high demand for DC string optimizers. Ampt uses onsemi’s N-Channel SiC MOSFET, part of the EliteSiC family of silicon carbide (SiC) technologies, in its DC string optimizers for critical power switching applications.
Ampt string optimizers are used in large-scale PV power plants, enabling lower-cost and higher-performing solar and DC-coupled energy storage systems that are collocated within the solar power plant. The string optimizers deliver power from the PV array at a high and fixed voltage for system voltages ranging from 600VDC to 1500VDC, reducing the overall current requirements and cost of the power plant. Ampt optimizers enable higher round-trip – charging and discharging – efficiency in the energy storage system and solar power plant by leveraging onsemi’s latest SiC MOSEFT technology with lowest ON-resistance and switching loses.
“Incorporating onsemi’s EliteSiC technology into our DC optimizers helps utility-scale solar developers and owners improve their project economics,” says Ampt’s CEO Levent Gun. “Clearly, the product performance was a critical decision point for us, but onsemi’s technical support during the design phase and their ongoing supply assurance to support Ampt’s rapid scaling are the hallmarks of a strong partner.”
The EliteSiC device offers an RDS(on) of 80mΩ nominally and a low gate charge (Qg) value of 56nC along with lower Rg of 1.7Ω. It is capable of operating at junction temperatures of 175°C, reducing the thermal management requirements in applications, resulting in smaller, lower-cost solutions.
“The combination of performance and reliability of our EliteSiC technology enables efficient and dependable DC optimizers and is what an industry leader such as Ampt expects,” says Simon Keeton, executive VP & general manager of onsemi’s Power Solutions Group. “We look forward to a continued collaboration on new products that drive renewable energy applications forward.”