SiC Schottky barrier diodes claim the industry's lowest forward voltage

July 05, 2012 // By Paul Buckley
ROHM has developed second-generation SiC (Silicon Carbide) Schottky barrier diodes ideal for power supply circuits in PV (photovoltaic) power conditioners, industrial equipment, servers, air conditioners, and more.

The new series features the industry's lowest forward voltage (VF=1.35V*) – 10% less than conventional products – reducing power consumption considerably.

In recent years SiC has emerged as the successor to silicon for use as a semiconductor material in next-generation devices, particularly in the power electronics sector (i.e. industrial equipment, solar cells, electric vehicles, railways), due to its lower power conversion losses and superior material properties. ROHM has launched mass production of SiC SBDs and MOSFETs in 2010, followed by the industry's first mass production of 'Full SiC' power modules in March 2012. However, although SiC SBDs are now commonly mass-produced on a global scale, their forward voltage remains at around 1.5 V, hindering energy conservation efforts. Further reductions in VF are required to minimize power dissipation.

Reducing the forward voltage, however, normally results in an increase in reverse leak current. ROHM overcame this challenge through device optimization and improved manufacturing processes, successfully reducing VF while maintaining low leakage current. In addition, this new series features particularly low forward rise voltage compared with competitor products for improved efficiency during low-load states – where it is commonly used.

Samples are available.

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