Power_electronics Features

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Power Electronics Europe News
Extensive New Work on Power Semiconductors

Semiconductor Power Devices: Physics, Characteristics, Reliability: published by Josef Lutz, Heinrich Schlangenotto, Uwe Scheuermann and Rik De Donker; second Edition, Springer- Verlag, Berlin Heidelberg 2018

According to Leo Lorenz, President of the European Center for Power Electronics (ECPE), this work is a great achievement for students and experts in the semiconductor and power electronics industry. The authors are well known in the power electronics society and have a long history in the relevant industries as well as distinguished professors and researchers at German universities.

The book, covering the major power devices today, is segmented in 15 chapters and 5 appendices comprising 706 pages.

Power conversion technologies today is driven by power density, efficiency and reliability while the semiconductor devices and their operation in the circuit are playing a key role. To operate the devices up to their limits in the SOA diagram it´s important to get deeper understanding about the intrinsic semiconductor structures along with parasitic components added on due to the packaging and chip interfacing technologies and finally the destruction mechanism during the operation in particular dynamic intervals. This is even more the case when we are moving from fast switching to ultrafast switching power devices such as Silicon Carbide and Gallium Nitride. On top of this developing trend for the same power rating the chip volume is scaled down along with an increase in junction and operating temperature. This is having a major impact on the thermal and mechanical stress, dynamic overloading and finally new destruction mechanism.

The outstanding value of this book for all relevant devices used today is the fact that the authors are explaining in detail the dynamic operation up to the limits, the failure and destruction mechanism in case of electrical or thermal overstress. On the one side all of the authors having a very strong background in industry, which helps to demonstrate and explain realistic applications of these new device types. On the other side, however, they are excellent teachers to describe the solid state physics, the thermal performance and failure mechanism with simple analytical equations proved by experimental data generated in industry and research labs.

After the introduction highlighting some key power electronics applications and describing system requirements followed by a chapter devoted to the basics in solid state physics needed to understand the pn-junctions, bipolar components and MOS-gated power devices. For all power devices the on-state characteristics, dynamic performance and individual cell designs including their parasitic circuit diagrams are discussed and simplified key equations describing the solid state physics for a deeper going understanding of the effects during operation. The key value is that application engineers will find all informations needed to make a proper design for a reliable devices operation in a power converter, the device designer will find the necessary analytical equations for a further optimization and the scientist in the research lab will have just enough theory to think about future new power devices based on silicon or wide band gap materials. The main difference to Silicon-based devices is discussed in detail for a good understanding of application engineers as well as devices designers.

Beside power devices themselves in several chapters there is a dedicated focus on packaging technology, destruction mechanism and reliability performance. This is of great important for the future as we are faced with a crucial chip scaling in vertical and horizontal direction which is ending up in technical challenges regarding the thermal management, handling of electrical and mechanical overloading stress and short circuit performance as well as new upcoming failure criteria’s due to extremely high local power densities. As some of the authors are having a very strong background regarding new chip interfacing materials, packaging design and reliability testing methods including failure analysis assessment there is an excellent summary to get a basic understanding of key effects and extended experimental data for evaluating devices in application within the SOA diagram. This material is helping to make a reliable power converter design for a specified lifetime. Even future development directions with fully monolithically integrated power IC´s based on GaN devices are pointed out briefly in Chapter 15 of the book.

The book is available as e-book, soft- and hardcover from €178.49 to € 227.76.




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