Silicon Carbide MOSFETs Demonstrate Superior High Frequency Performance Under Hard Switched Conditions

Posted on Feb 4, 2014

Comparing the performance of 1200V silicon carbide (SiC) MOSFETs with 1200V silicon MOSFETs and IGBTs at high frequency is critical to establish the difference in device losses and power-handling capabilities between the technologies. Using a demonstration platform that can be set to emulate a given set of parameters (e. g. , switch voltage, current

Silicon Carbide MOSFETs Demonstrate Superior High Frequency Performance Under Hard Switched Conditions
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, frequency and case temperature) that the devices will face at high power under hard-switched conditions, the difference in losses between the device technologies can be characterized by comparing DC input power. Because it is not practical to build separate platforms (retrofitted with SiC devices) for each potential application, (including grid connected solar inverters, power factor correction circuits, motor drives, interruptible power systems, etc. ), it was necessary to design a demonstration platform to overcome this limitation. A transformerless DCDC converter platform with a single ground-referenced switch affords the capability of recirculating the load current back to the input link, eliminating the inherent limitations of a transformer-based platform (prohibitively high losses through proximity and skin effects of the transformer windings at high frequencies). The single-ended primary inductor converter (SEPIC) provides the ability to buck/boost without inverting the output voltage, thus making it an ideal platform to compare relative device performance between SiC MOSFETs and comparably-rated conventional silicon MOSFETs and IGBTs. The comparison included the best available examples of a 1200V silicon MOSFET (Microsemi APT28M120B2)1, the highest current 1200V silicon MOSFET in a TO-247 package available (its maximum current rating at 100 °C is similar to that of the SiC MOSFET); a 1200V silicon IGBT (Infineon...

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