Among the most promising technologies in the mission to decarbonize emissions intensive transportation vehicles are SiC based power-management solutions supported by configurable digital gate driver technology.
The high power and voltage requirements of electric vehicles (EVs) of all types, including electric buses and other etransportation power systems, require the higher efficiency of silicon carbide (SiC) technology to replace older silicon Field Effect Transistors (FETs) and Insulated-Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBTs).
This combination delivers significantly better efficiency than silicon when electrifying some of the world’s biggest carbon dioxide (CO2)-equivalent GHG emission sources as measured in teragrams (Tg): buses (22.2), rail (37.6), and medium- and heavy-duty trucks (444). Key systems in these commercial transportation vehicles — such as the auxiliary power unit (APU) in a train or bus — can be reduced in size and operated with greater efficiency and reliability at lower cost using SiC MOSFETs that employ digital gate drivers to squeeze the most productivity from the least amount of energy.
Designers of high-voltage power systems have struggled to meet customers’ needs for continued innovation when using silicon MOSFETs and IGBTs.
This article focuses on the three EV charging levels and the Microchip solutions that can support several aspects of residential, commercial and fast charging systems.