GaN DC-DC converters reach 98% efficiency

October 06, 2017 // By Nick Flaherty
Eltek in Norway has worked with Infineon Technologies to develop a high efficiency Dc-DC power module using gallium nitride (GaN) devices.

The Flatpack2 SHE uses infineon's CoolGaN MOSFETs to reduce losses by 50 percent over the previous Flatpack2 modules while further improving reliability and total cost of ownership. 

The Flatpack2 DCDC 380/48 3000 SHE Converter for example converts the 380VDC bus voltage down to 48VDC with an efficiency of 98.2% and a power density of 33 W/In 3, making central 380VDC-UPS systems a  a competitive alternative for a wider range of data centres. 

“Reaching the 98 percent efficiency target, while improving an already industry leading field performance in a competitive way, will be appreciated by especially our telecom and data center customers,” said Morten Schoyen, Chief Marketing Officer at Eltek which is part of the Delta group. “With our customers in focus we have also ensured backward compatibility to all 3 kW Flatpack2 versions. In other words, efficiency upgrades have never been simpler as the older modules can just be replaced,” he said.

The higher efficiency has a substantial impact on carbon footprint, consumed energy and ultimately reduce the operational expense of power systems. Replacing the previous Flatpack 2 modules with 92 percent efficiency saves signifcant costs. For example, for a single mobile base station in Italy with a 6 kW load the annual saving is € 576 from using the SHE module. For a 250kW central office site in UK, the annual saving is £18,350.

“We always seek to stay ahead of the game on technology, and the ability to take on game changing technology like the CoolGaN from Infineon is key to achieve this goal. Besides the efficiency improvement, this technology brings improved reliability as well as manufacturability and other advantages that will enable us to continue to spearhead this industry,” said Erik Myhre, Senior R&D Manager at Eltek.

“We are delighted that Eltek is now manufacturing AC/DC power converters featuring our CoolGaN technology,” said Dr. Steffen Metzger, Senior Director High Voltage Conversion for Infineon Technologies. “They prove the value of GaN