Power conversion losses are endemic in all areas of electricity consumption, including motion control, lighting, air conditioning, and information technology. Si, the workhorse of the industry, has reached its material limits. Increasingly, the lateral AlGaN/GaN HEMT based on gallium nitride (GaN-on-Si) is becoming the device of choice for medium power electronics as it enables high-power conversion efficiency and reduced form factor at attractive pricing for wide market penetration. The reduced form factor enabled by high-efficiency operation at high frequency further enables significant system price reduction because of savings in bulky extensive passive elements and heat sink costs. The high-power market, however, still remains unaddressed by lateral GaN devices. The current and voltage demand for high power conversion application makes the chip area in a lateral topology so large that it becomes more difficult to manufacture. Vertical GaN devices would play a big role alongside of silicon carbide (SiC) to address the high power conversion needs. In this paper, the development, performance, and status of lateral and vertical GaN devices are discussed.
- Gallium nitride (GaN)
- lateral transistors
- vertical transistors
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering