Two team for US automotive discrete power device production

October 17, 2019 //By Nick Flaherty
Steifpower and SkyWater are working together to produce discrete power devices in the US for Tier 1 automotive designs
Steifpower and SkyWater are working together to produce discrete power devices in the US for Tier 1 automotive designs

US foundry SkyWater Technology is working with Hong Kong fabless chip maker Steifpower Technology on a range of discrete power devices for automotive designs.

The two will design and make power MOSFETs, IGBTs and other discrete power devices for the Tier 1 automotive customers that supply car makers.

Steifpower, which has its European office in Italy, is using SkyWater’s Integrated process Flow Transfer (SWIFT) services to rapidly ramp production for car makers' production schedules. The initial engagement is focused on transferring a high performance power MOSFET to the US fab. The MOSFET has a low input capacitance for better switching frequency as well as a low RDS(on) on resistance in applications up to 200V.

SkyWater will also process Steifpower’s advanced IGBTs (above) which have a high switching frequency and embedded backside diode for applications up to 1700V. These high efficiency discrete power devices with very low power losses provide several advantages for vehicles such as better fuel consumption and decreased carbon dioxide emissions, higher operating temperature, higher alternator efficiency and better heat dissipation with lower forward voltage drop.

Yole Développement sees the total power MOSFET market growing to $7.5bn in 2020, a 3.4 percent annual growth from 2016 to 2020. There is also substantial growth for the IGBT market, with electronic vehicles and charging stations driving silicon IGBTs, estimating market growth of 10-12.5 percent per year between 2016 and 2022.

“The automotive industry is seeing record levels of semiconductor content to support exciting capabilities for safety, efficiency and convenience,” said Dr. Brad Ferguson, SkyWater’s Chief Technology Officer.  “This trend drives strong demand for high efficiency onboard power management like that enabled by Steifpower’s technology.  We are very pleased about our collaboration with Steifpower which positions us to better address these key markets.”


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