Infineon signs Japanese SiC wafer deal

Infineon signs Japanese SiC wafer deal

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

Highlighting the vital importance of the supply chain for silicon carbide SiC wafers, Infineon Technologies has signed a key two year supply contract with Japanese supplier Showa Denko

The deal covers an extensive range of silicon carbide material (SiC) including epitaxy and includes development of the next generation material technology and ways to cut costs, a key requirement for SiC chip development as it will have to compete directly with the cheaper gallium nitride (GaN) technology at 1200V. The cost of the SiC wafer is the major factor in the overall cost of the devices.

Infineon says the deal secures more base material for the growing demand for SiC-based products as the demand grows 30 to 40 percent each year. Its 650V, 1200V and 1700V CoolSiC MOSFETs are used in photovoltaic, industrial power supply and charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. Cree already supplies SiC wafers to the company, and others have been positioning to ensure supply.

“Our broad and fast growing portfolio demonstrates Infineon’s leading role in supporting and shaping the market for SiC-based semiconductors which is expected to grow 30 to 40 percent annually over the next five years,” said Peter Wawer, President of the Industrial Power Control Division at Infineon. “The expansion of our supplier base with Showa Denko for wafers in this growth market marks an important step in our multisourcing strategy. It will support us to reliably meet the growing demand mid to longterm. Furthermore, we plan to collaborate with Showa Denko on the strategic development of the material to improve the quality while cutting costs at the same time.”

“We are proud to be able to provide Infineon with Best-in-Class SiC material and our cutting-edge epitaxy technology” says Jiro Ishikawa, Senior Managing Corporate Officer from Showa Denko. “Our aim is to continuously improve our SiC material and develop the next technology. We value Infineon as an excellent partner in this regard.”

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