How SiC Semiconductor Technology Boosts EV Gains

New silicon carbide devices are revolutionizing the autonomy of the electric vehicle with attractive, high-power applications.

FREMONT, CA: With electric vehicles becoming the future of automotive and new technologies are transitioning from expensive models and proof of concepts to mass adoption and market saturation. Electric vehicles have been dependent on silicon power transistors from the design point of view for a very long time. New advancements in silicon carbide technology, with different semiconductor materials and properties, make them suitable for several applications better.  

To ensure that EVs can work over long distances and charge within a consistent timeframe, it is eminent that the vehicle’s power electronics are proficient of handling high temperatures. Silicon carbide semiconductors profit from more than 95 percent energy capability, meaning that only 5 percent of energy is lost as heat during situations of power conversion, such as recharging the vehicle at a high power rapid-charger. The use of silicon carbide expedites the automotive industry’s step towards electric vehicles, facilitating greater system efficiencies that result in electric cars with quicker charging, while mitigating cost, lowering weight and conserving space.

Electric vehicles (EVs) necessitate compatible power electronic devices competent of efficient operation at elevated temperatures. One way to enhance electric car features is the use of silicon carbide semiconductors as they have higher thermal conductivity, operating at higher temperatures, which is up to 200 degrees Celsius.  

Ultimately, electric vehicles will shift to silicon carbide technology shortly. There are EVs from various manufacturers on the road that contains silicon carbide power products. The SiC-based systems enable higher switching frequency and lower losses. Among other advantages, SiC enables electric vehicles to mitigate the size and form factor of the system.