Power Semiconductors Weekly Vol. 13

Vishay Intertechnology World’s Best Automotive -80 V P-Channel MOSFET Increases Efficiency and Power Density

Vishay Intertechnology, Inc. introduced the world’s best AEC-Q101 qualified p-channel -80 V TrenchFET® MOSFET. With the lowest on-resistance of any -80 V p-channel device, the new Vishay Siliconix SQJA81EP increases power density and efficiency in automotive applications. In the compact 5.13 mm by 6.15 mm PowerPAK® SO-8L single package with gullwing leads the SQJA81EP offers on-resistance down to 17.3 mΩ maximum / 14.3 mΩ typical at 10 V. 

The on-resistance of the Automotive Grade MOSFET released is 28 % lower than the closest competing device in the DPAK package — while offering a 50 % smaller footprint — and 31 % lower than previous-generation solutions. These values translate into energy savings by minimizing power losses from conduction, while allowing higher output for increased power density. Combined with the SQJA81EP’s superior gate charge down to 52 nC at 10 V — which reduces losses from gate driving — the result is best in class gate charge times on-resistance, a critical figure of merit (FOM) for MOSFETs used in power conversion applications. 

With high temperature operation to +175 °C, the device provides the ruggedness and reliability required for automotive applications such as reverse polarity protection, battery management, high side load switching, and LED lighting. In addition, the SQJA81EP’s gullwing leads allow for increased automatic optical inspection (AOI) capabilities and provide mechanical stress relief for increased board-level reliability. 

The device’s -80 V rating provides the safety margin required to support several popular input voltage rails, including 12 V, 24 V, and 48 V systems. The MOSFET’s increased power density saves PCB space in these systems by reducing the number of components needed in parallel. In addition, as a p-channel device, the SQJA81EP enables more simple gate drive designs that don’t require the charge pump needed by its n-channel counterparts. Lead (Pb)-free, halogen-free, and RoHS-compliant, the MOSFET is 100 % Rg and UIS tested. 

Samples and production quantities of the SQJA81EP are available now, with lead times of 14 weeks. 

China’s Wingtech Builds $2Bn EV-Geared Plant Amid Chip Shortage 

Chinese electronics manufacturer Wingtech Technology will invest 12 billion yuan ($1.8 billion) to build a factory that makes semiconductors for electric vehicles in Shanghai, moving to produce a key component domestically amid a global chip supply crunch. 

Wingtech is building the plant together with Nexperia, a Dutch chipmaking subsidiary. The facility is expected to become operational next year. 

The new plant will produce discrete semiconductors, such as power chips and transistors. Using 12-inch wafers, the facility will have the capacity to turn out 400,000 wafers a year — among the highest for discretes. 

China's Wingtech Builds $2Bn EV-Geared Plant Amid Chip Shortage

Until now, Nexperia only had back-end semiconductor assembly processes in China. The new factory will be the first time the company takes part in front-end processes in China. 

A major reason Wingtech and Nexperia are making the jump is the global shortage in automotive chips. Power semiconductors are essential in conserving energy in EVs and mobile phones. However, supplies of such semiconductors for vehicles and machinery have become scarce since fall. 

Nexperia ranks ninth globally in the production of power semiconductors. The demand from EVs is expected to grow. The market for discrete semiconductors will expand to $28.5 billion in 2024, according to British research firm Omdia, up 14% from last year. 

Boost for Semiconductor Production in Austria 

The European Commission has approved Austria providing €146.5m (about US$170 million) in state aid for semiconductor technology to Infineon Technologies, NXP Semiconductor and AT&S. 

The Austrian subsidiaries of Infineon, NXP and AT&S have been allowed to join an existing Important Project of Common European Interest (IPCEI) in microelectronics approved by the Commission in 2018.  

The public funding is expected to unlock additional €530m ($620m) of investment from the companies. 

The first microelectronics IPCEI set up in 2018 was originally between France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom and allowed public support amounting to €1.75 billion (about US$2bn). 

The IPCEI allows state-aid to go further than just supporting R&D but also to support initial manufacturing and is considered by Europe as a way to allow state subsidy for companies without breaking World Trade Organization (WTO) agreements. 

The microelectronics IPCEI has the goal of developing innovative microelectronics technologies and components for automotive, Internet of Things (IoT) and other applications such as space, avionics, and security and their first industrial deployment. The IPCEI originally involved 27 companies and two research organizations.   

ROHM Semiconductor Europe Appoints New President 

As of April 1st, 2021, ROHM Semiconductor Europe appoints Wolfram Harnack as the company’s new President. The former President, Toshimitsu Suzuki, will lead the European Sales Division as General Manager from April 1st from the company’s headquarters in Japan. Wolfram Harnack joined ROHM Semiconductor Europe GmbH as Managing Director in October 2020. 

Toshimitsu Suzuki, the new General Manager of the European Sales Division, justifies the choice of Wolfram Harnack with his long and rich experience and his comprehensive market knowledge: “With Wolfram Harnack, a strong leader will become the new President of ROHM’s European Headquarters. He can build on a solid foundation when it comes to strategy, business development as well as sales and marketing against an international background. Mr. Harnack has proven during his remarkable career that he is determined to achieve business growth. I look forward to continuing to collaborate with him and to explore the great growth potential in both our existing and new markets.” 

“I am honored to lead a company for which I have already worked with passion and to whose further successes I will now contribute significantly,” said Wolfram Harnack on the occasion of his appointment as new President. “ROHM Semiconductor offers a wide range of technologies and is a quality and innovation leader especially in the field of Silicon Carbide and Analog Power devices. The competent team helps customers to achieve their development goals by excellent application support and by providing the necessary insights. In this sense, my key aim is to further extend our customer service and accelerate growth in the automotive and industrial segments, especially in the power and analog area.” 

Wolfram Harnack holds a degree in electrical engineering. In January 2008, he joined ROHM as Sales Director for the first time. In 2015, he moved to Mitsubishi, where he worked until he returned to ROHM in October 2020.  

Toshiba Gets Buyout Offer from British Private Equity Firm 

British private equity firm CVC Capital Partners has proposed a buyout of Toshiba Corp. to take it private, the Japanese firm’s president said, in a deal likely worth around 2 trillion yen ($18 billion). 

The investment firm will discuss terms with the management of the Japanese electronics and infrastructure conglomerate and engage in talks with the Japanese government about screening the proposed acquisition, sources familiar with the matter said. 

If the proposal goes through and CVC’s tender offer is successful, it would help shield Toshiba from outside pressure from vocal shareholders and prevent their interference. But going private also raises the bar for Toshiba, a household name with a history dating back to 1875, to ensure transparency and proper governance. 

Push the Limits of Efficiency and Power Density for EV Charger Converters

EV Chargers require the smallest, most efficient converters at a competitive price point.  

Common knowledge says higher switching frequencies reduce filter size, but there are limitations to this principle. Switching devices, for instance, may become prohibitively expensive at extreme switching frequencies. With the new Silicon Carbide portfolio, SEMIKRON now has the tools to push these limits further. 

Semikron webinar

In this webinar, Semikron will compare power module selection with filter design. Additionally, they will offer insights into the findings of converter development. ​​​​​​​ 

EBV Elektronik Presents: SiC/GaN Training Days 

Over the last couple of years new innovative semiconductor technologies emerged that generate a paradigm shift in the power management market. Silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) now offer much more efficient power conversion properties. Especially used for applications in the industrial, automotive and consumer electronics markets. These technologies are collectively known as wide bandgap (WBG) solutions as they offer a larger bandgap than traditional solutions. Along with their energy-saving credentials, they also can provide significant weight, volume and lifecycle cost reductions across all devices. 

2021 will be the year of WBG technology. Together with leading suppliers EBV bundles up all you need to know about state of the art SiC and GaN solutions and their benefits in different applications. 

The webinar is scheduled on April 21-22, 2021. 

APEC 2021 Conference Goes Virtual

APEC 2021 will be presented on the virtual event platform Social27. The virtual format will not only ensure the safety of the community, it will also allow: 

  • more of the global community of power professionals to participate; 
  • more flexibility in accessing live, on-demand, and recorded content; 
  • live Q & A sessions; 
  • a complete virtual exposition; 
  • and multiple ways to network on a robust virtual platform 

APEC 2021 will be presented on the virtual event platform Social27 and will take place June 14-17, 2021. 

Find more information about power semiconductors in Marketing in Power Electronics section of the website.