Power Integrations’ SCALE-iDriver for SiC MOSFETs. (Graphic: Business Wire)

SAN JOSE, Calif.—Power Integrations reported that its SIC118xKQ SCALE-iDriver™ is now certified to AEC-Q100 for automotive use.

The SCALE-iDriver is a high-efficiency, single-channel gate driver for silicon carbide (SiC) MOSFETs (metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors). Devices can be configured to support gate-drive voltage requirements of commonly used SiC MOSFETs and feature sophisticated safety and protection features, according to a release from Power Integrations. The company is a prominent developer of gate-driver technology for medium- and high-voltage inverter applications.

The SIC1182KQ (1200 V) and SIC1181KQ (750 V) SCALE-iDriver devices are optimized for driving SiC MOSFETs in automotive applications, exhibiting rail-to-rail output, fast gate switching speed, unipolar supply voltage supporting positive and negative output voltages, integrated power and voltage management, and reinforced isolation.

“Silicon carbide MOSFET technology opens the door for smaller, lighter automotive inverter systems,” said Michael Hornkamp, senior director of marketing for automotive gate-driver products at Power Integrations. “Switching speeds and operating frequencies are increasing; our low gate resistor values maintain switching efficiency, while our fast short-circuit response quickly protects the system in the event of a fault.

“Furthermore, SCALE-iDriver sets a new standard in isolation robustness for functional safety; even if a power device causes catastrophic driver failure, SCALE-iDriver’s isolation remains intact, ensuring that no part of the chassis will carry life-threatening high voltages,” continued Hornkamp.

Critical safety features include Drain to Source Voltage (VDS) monitoring, SENSE readout, primary and secondary Undervoltage Lock-out (UVLO), current-limited gate drive, and Advanced Active Clamping (AAC), which facilitates safe operation and soft turn-off under fault conditions. The company said in the release that AAC, in combination with VDS monitoring, ensures safe turn-off in less than 2 µs during short-circuit conditions. Gate-drive control and AAC features allow gate resistance to be minimized; this is said to reduce switching losses, maximizing inverter efficiency.

Power Integrations pairs the SCALE-iDriver control and safety features with its high-speed FluxLink™ communication technology to deliver what it called “a revolution in gate-driver IC technology compared to opto-, capacitive- or Si- isolated magnetic couplers.” The combination is said to dramatically improve isolation capability and enable safe, cost-effective designs for inverters with very few external components up to 300 kW.

Power Integrations, Inc. (www.power.com) is a developer of semiconductor technologies for high-voltage power conversion. The company’s products are key building blocks in the clean-power ecosystem, enabling the generation of renewable energy as well as the efficient transmission and consumption of power in applications ranging from milliwatts to megawatts.

Power Integrations, SCALE, SCALE-iDriver and the Power Integrations logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Power Integrations, Inc.

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