GaN boost for safety critical EV switch

GaN boost for safety critical EV switch

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

VisIC Technologies has teamed up with AB Mikroelektronik in Austria to develop a high voltage GaN-based solid-state battery disconnect switch with Fast Short Circuit Detection (FSCD) for electric vehicle designs.

AB Mikroelektronik is a a major player in automotive battery disconnect switches and will use the D³GaN technology from VisIC in Israel 

“We are happy to collaborate with AB Mikroelektronik, which is a major player in high power automotive applications with a strong experience in solid-state battery disconnect switches. This is a big advantage in developing the next step for a 400V battery switch,” said Ran Soffer, VP Sales & Marketing at VisIC. “Our effort to constantly serve our customers is raising the bar for high voltage, high current solutions for the EV market. Our focus for the EV industry using the D3GaN technology is enabling the future electric-drive technology to be aligned with the market needs to reduce the electric drive cost and improve its efficiency with a reliable high voltage automotive grad technology.”

In the event of a short circuit in the high voltage EV system it is mandatory to detect and disconnect the battery as fast as possible. This requires a very fast power switch and manage the short current until the short circuit is detected and disconnected.

The combination of the D³GaN power switches with extremely low switching times and the VisIC’s FSCD patented circuit meets the requirements to realize a reliable high voltage, high current battery disconnect switch, and to support the functional safety implementation in HV battery disconnect application.

“AB Mikroelektronik experience in high power integration using thick-film aluminum circuit boards and 48V battery disconnect switches will allow fast transfer to a high-voltage prototype,” said Dr. Louis Costa, Head of Advanced Development at AB Mikroelektronik. “Our long-standing experience in aluminum packaging for high power semiconductors will allow a fast transfer from existing solutions for 48V battery solid-state switches to a high voltage prototype. We consider GaN as a promising candidate for future e-mobility applications due to its high voltage and ultrafast switching capabilities.”

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