25 January 2023
onsemi and VW collaborate on silicon carbide for next-gen EVs
Power semiconductor IC supplier onsemi of Phoenix, AZ, USA has signed a strategic agreement with Germany’s Volkswagen AG to provide modules and semiconductors that enable a complete electric vehicle (EV) traction inverter solution for VW’s next-generation platform family. The semiconductors are part of an overall system optimization and provide a solution that will support the front and rear traction inverters in the VW models.
As a first step in the agreement, onsemi will deliver its silicon carbide-based EliteSiC 1200V traction inverter power modules. The EliteSiC power modules are pin-to-pin compatible to easily scale the solution to different power levels and types of motors. Teams from the two firms have been collaborating for more than a year on optimization of the power modules for the next-generation platform, with pre-production samples under development and evaluation.
“The superior performance and quality of onsemi’s traction inverter modules, together with our joint efforts to create the best system solution, enable us to deliver the outstanding driving experience and quality customers expect from a VW group vehicle,” says Karsten Schnake, head of the operative and strategic semiconductor taskforce COMPASS at Volkswagen. “onsemi’s broad portfolio of intelligent power and sensing solutions further allows us to offer cutting-edge technologies and features in our EVs, from the traction inverter and beyond,” he adds. “Besides this milestone, onsemi — with its balanced production facility layout in the USA, Asia and Europe, including the plant in the Czech Republic — is the perfect match to support our strategic markets with all high-voltage solutions and more.”
With 19 wafer fabrication and packaging manufacturing sites, onsemi provides VW with more than 500 different devices — including IGBTs, MOSFETs, image sensors and power management integrated circuits (PMICs). In addition, onsemi has a vertical silicon carbide production chain — which includes volume boule growth, wafering, substrate, epitaxy, device fabrication, best-in-class integrated modules and discrete package solutions — that supports a secured supply chain.
“Our broad manufacturing footprint — including a resilient end-to-end SiC supply chain — empowers onsemi to deliver the supply assurance OEMs demand,” says Simon Keeton, executive VP & general manager, Power Solutions Group, onsemi. ”Our investments in ramping production globally, especially in silicon carbide, further allow us to support VW’s rapidly scaling EV production.”
The inverter solution for EVs consists of onsemi’s EliteSiC 1200V 3x half-bridge modules, and this system solution supports both axle inverters covering a wide range of power.