ON teams with Mercedes for electric racing power

November 07, 2018 // By Rich Pell
ON Semiconductor (Phoenix, AZ) has teamed up with constructor Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport and Mercedes EQ Formula E Team to develop power systems for vehicle electrification.

The company's technology is already being used in the energy recovery pack that controls ignition and injection drivers of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport race car, which has won four consecutive Formula One World Constructors' championships and five consecutive Drivers’ titles. ON Semiconductor says it will now also collaborate with the Mercedes EQ Formula E Team in developing next-generation electric powertrain innovations for cutting-edge performance and efficiency.

"Formula E cars see massive power transfers during their running so it's not a simple electrical problem," says Dave Priscak, vice president, global solutions engineering at ON Semiconductor. "Our comprehensive expertise that spans both mechanical and electrical engineering offers full solutions to the innovation of next-generation electric vehicles. We look forward to continuing our work with Mercedes to further capitalize on this expertise in the development of technological advancements in power devices and electric vehicle technology."

Race cars in particular need technology that can withstand high levels of shock, vibration, and extreme temperatures. The more efficient the semiconductor device, the less power is lost to wasted heat, resulting in better mileage or miles per watt of energy. At the same time, engineers also aim to make their cars' components smaller to save weight and space.

ON Semiconductor's power products and solutions - including IGBTs, high-voltage gate drivers, super junction MOSFETs, high-voltage rectifiers, high-voltage DC-DC converters, as well as wide-band-gap (WBG) developments in silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) - can be used in next-generation electric vehicles. These technologies, says the company, provide longer driving range between charges, faster battery charging times. and better thermal management.

"ON Semiconductor is a market leader in innovative power management solutions for vehicle electrification," says David Somo, senior vice president corporate strategy, marketing and solutions engineering at ON Semiconductor. "The powertrain systems within both a Formula 1 and Formula E vehicle not only possess an increased number of power semiconductors, these semiconductors must meet extremely demanding performance and


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