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17 March 2016

GE Aviation receives $2.1m US Army contract to develop SiC power electronics

GE Aviation (an operating unit of GE) has been awarded a $2.1m contract from the US Army to develop and demonstrate silicon carbide (SiC)-based power electronics supporting high-voltage next-generation ground vehicle electrical power architecture. GE's Global Research Center is developing silicon carbide MOSFET technology across multiple industries including aviation, healthcare and energy.

"The US Army's implementation of silicon carbide technology for high-voltage, more-electric ground vehicles, facilitates significant improvements in size, weight and power for high-temperature applications," says Vic Bonneau, president of Electrical Power Systems for GE Aviation. "We have multiple SiC-based power conversion products in development and continue to invest in this area," he adds. "Successes to date have led to this new application that will enable the US Army to better manage on-board power and simplify the vehicle cooling architecture. Ultimately, this product will increase mission capability for the warfighter." 

The $2.1m contract consists of an 18-month development program to demonstrate the benefits of GE's silicon carbide MOSFET technology combined with gallium nitride (GaN) devices in a 15kW, 28VDC/600VDC bi-directional converter. The hardware should provide twice the power in less than half the volume of present silicon-based power electronics. In addition, the converters will be able to operate in parallel and be CANbus programmable.

The contract is in support of the US Army's Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) next-generation vehicle electrical power architecture leap-ahead technology development. It will result in a technology demonstration in mid-2017.

The contracting agent for US Army TARDEC is DCS Corp, which develops advanced technology solutions and provides acquisition management expertise for US Army aviation, ground vehicle, soldier systems and missile systems.

See related items:

Sandia National Laboratories orders Matheson/Taiyo Nippon Sanso commercial grade GaN MOCVD system

Tags: GE Aviation SiC power devices

Visit:  www.ge.com/aviation

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