Efforts at curbing carbon dioxide emissions are stepping up, with more electric vehicles on our roads and the installation of renewable energy sources on the rise. Alongside these advances, the makers of these green technologies are increasing the electrical efficiency of their offerings, with silicon-based power devices being ditched in favour of superior alternatives based on the likes of SiC.
Supporting this move are the superior physical properties of these compounds. Compared with silicon, semiconductors such as SiC have wider-bandgaps, a higher electron saturation velocity, a higher critical electric field and a larger thermal conductivity. Drawing on all these strengths, power transistors offer higher operating frequencies, higher power ratings, elevated operating temperatures, better cooling capability and lower energy loss – just the traits that the market wants.