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Power semiconductor devices have attracted increasing attention as key components in a variety of power conversion units. Realization of high-performance power devices will lead to enormous energy saving, conservation of fossil fuels, and less environmental pollution. Because of the mature technology of Si power devices currently employed in most applications, it is now difficult to achieve innovative breakthroughs in this field. Newly emerging semiconductors such as silicon carbide (SiC) are attractive for advanced power devices, owing to their superior physical properties. 1–4 It should be noted that SiC is an exceptional wide bandgap semiconductor with a very high field breakdown. Furthermore, the doping concentration can be controlled in a wide range, more than five orders of magnitude, for both n-type (N or P doping) and p-type (Al doping). The figure-of-merit for power devices is given by elEB 3 (Baliga’s figure of merit), 5 where e is the dielectric constant, l the mobility, and EB the breakdown field. The figure-of-merit of SiC exceeds 500 times that of silicon, indicating a great potential of SiC for power device applications.Owing to the remarkable improvement of SiC wafer quality and the progress in device technology, high-voltage SiC Schottky barrier diodes (SBDs) and field-effect transistors (FETs), which significantly outperform Si counterparts, have been demonstrated. 6, 7 SiC SBDs have been on the market since 2001, and production of 600À1700 V SiC FETs has started in recent years. SiC power devices will become key components to realize significant reduction of power dissipation in a variety of power converters/inverters in the …
Publication date: 
1 Jan 2010

F La Via, M Camarda, A La Magna

Biblio References: 
Volume: 13511 Issue: 10.1063/1.3457840 Pages: 108
J. Appl. Phys