There is a new semiconductor in town

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by jmoffat, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. jmoffat

    Thread Starter Member

    Jul 18, 2012
    There is a new semiconductor in town and I didn't get the memo. Sicone carbide. Evidently they make IGBT's and MOSFET's in a new flavor, SiC. I haven't seen any mention of this in my text book. Where can I go to learn about these new age semiconductors?
  2. MaxHeadRoom


    Jul 18, 2013
    They have been around since 1998 evidentally!.
    SiC is the way of representing Silicone Carbide, nothing new.
  3. crutschow


    Mar 14, 2008
    Google shows many references.
  4. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    Silicon carbide and germanium nitride and silicon germanium are the three emerging technologies for HEMT transistors and semiconductors.

    HEMT stands for high electron mobility semiconductors. They are essentially low on-resistance devices. For CPUs, this allows speed well beyond the 3.4 GHz limit that we have plateaued at for the last 10 years in doped silicon. Expect to see speeds to 60 - 100 GHz range. IBM and intel are starting with Silicon Germanium for power efficiency and less heat. I don't know if the demand is there yet for high speed. More servers are generally the solution lately instead of faster servers.

    For power transistors, it allows lower on-resistance and, therefore, smaller motor controls for eVehicles. More efficient inverters for solar farms and direct-drive wind turbines.

    Also, higher switching speed in power transistors for SMPS, smaller, lighter transformers and inductors. Less heat dissipation from power supplies.

    Gallium nitride is also used in high brightness LEDs.
  5. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    Gallium nitride transistors are already available fro Digikey - made by EPC (efficient power conversion). A startup launched by the former CEO of international rectifier. There is some IP dispute between the two companies. IR will have their own GaN transistors shortly.
  6. Austin Clark


    Dec 28, 2011
    Are you sure about that? At 60-100 GHz, light itself (whose speed is close to the maximum speed at which electrical signals can propagate) will only be able to travel 3-5mm . Also, how would that clock frequency likely be generated? I'm sure it's possible, maybe via transmission lines to "sync" the clock phase across the entire PCB? I dunno. It'd be crazy to see such high clock rates though, makes me excited for the future!
  7. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    Some products are already there. 60 GHz Ethernet bridge...

    Rf micro devices sells GaN foundry services.
    >20 GHz with current technology.

    Also, W-band microwave radar is up to 100 GHz
    W-Band (allowed in some countries for parking assist & blind spot detection)
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  8. WBahn


    Mar 31, 2012
    Silicone Carbide?

    Is that like, you know, implants that really, uhmmm, firm? :D
  9. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    Ok, I didn't see the extra "e". Then maybe not 100 GHz and used, as you suggest, to simulate a particular excited state instead.