Silicon carbide switches drive power density in 300A module

June 02, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Cree recently introduced a power module that it says breaks price-performance barriers in power conversion systems rated up to the megawatt level. The all-SiC (siliocn carbide) 300A, 1.2kV half-bridge module doubles power density and enables efficiencies up to 99% in induction heating, central solar inverters and afe motor drives.

Packaged in an industry-standard 62mm housing, the module reduces energy loss due to switching by more than five times compared to the equivalent silicon solution. This efficiency enables all-SiC high power converters rated up to the megawatt level; switching efficiency and performance allow designers to reduce the provision of magnetic and cooling elements, delivering double the power density and a lower system cost while also reducing end user cost of ownership. Offering a simplified two-level topology that is feasible at higher frequencies, the new module can also eliminate the need to invest in multi-level silicon-based solutions, Cree asserts.

The module is available with multiple gate driver options and is pin compatible to standard 62mm half-bridge modules, including IGBT modules rated at 450A or more.

“The half-bridge power module is an example of Cree’s commitment to the commercialisation of SiC-based power electronics,” says Cengiz Balkas, general manager and vice president, Cree Power and RF. “...we have extended the benefits of SiC power modules to the 100kW to 1MW power range for applications such as induction heating, central solar inverters and active front-end motor drives.”

The SiC 300A, 1.2kV half-bridge module will be available as part number CAS300M12BM2 for $451 (1000). Companion gate drivers are also available from Cree and Prodrive.