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Recent progress and current issues in SiC semiconductor devices for power applications

Recent progress and current issues in SiC semiconductor devices for power applications

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A review of current issues in SiC device processing technology is followed by a critical assessment of the current state-of-the-art and future potential for SiC power devices. Material quality, ion implantation, the SiC–SiO2 interface and the thermal stability of contacting systems are all identified as requiring further work before the full range of devices and applications can be addressed. The evaluation of current device technology reveals that SiC Schottky and PIN diodes are already capable of increased power densities and substantially improved dynamic performance compared to their Si counterparts. Although direct replacement of Si devices is not yet economically viable, improvements in system performance and reductions in total system cost may be realised in the short term. Widespread use will, however, require continued improvements in wafer quality while costs must fall by a factor of ten. Finally, the development of new and improved packaging techniques, capable of handling increased die temperature and high thermal cycling stresses, will be needed to fully exploit the potential of SiC.

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