8 July 2020
ROHM and LEADRIVE open joint lab in Shanghai
Power semiconductor maker ROHM Semiconductor of Kyoto, Japan and Leadrive Technology (LEADRIVE) of Shanghai, China, which manufactures automotive powertrains for new energy vehicles, have opened their joint laboratory for silicon carbide (SiC) technology in the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (Lingang New Area).
Adopted increasingly in onboard vehicle chargers and DC/DC converters, SiC power devices provide several advantages compared with silicon-based power devices such as insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs). One key benefit is significantly lower losses during both switching and conduction along with being able to operate at higher temperature.
Since 2017, ROHM and LEADRIVE have been collaborating and carrying out detailed technical exchanges on automotive applications utilizing SiC power devices. Establishing a joint research lab centered on vehicle power modules and inverters utilizing ROHM’s SiC MOSFET bare chips and isolated gate drivers will give both firms the opportunity to further accelerate the development of innovative power solutions, it is reckoned.
“The adoption of power modules that integrate SiC chips for new energy vehicles will become an industry trend over the next couple of years. Commercializing mature SiC-equipped devices by collecting resources from around the world and carrying out R&D gives us a competitive edge as an automotive tier-1 manufacturer,” believes Dr Jie Shen, chairman & general manager at Leadrive Technology (Shanghai) Co Ltd. “ROHM has been a strong partner since LEADRIVE was founded. This joint research laboratory will allow us to deepen our collaboration,” he adds.
“We are committed to promoting the use of SiC for xEV applications,” says Dr Kazuhide Ino, board member, corporate officer, chief scientific officer & senior director of Power Device Business at ROHM Co Ltd. “Understanding customer needs and market trends is extremely important when developing SiC power device technology,” he adds. “LEADRIVE plays an important role in the applied research of SiC as a manufacturer of automotive power modules and inverters. Through this joint research lab, we can strengthen our partnership and contribute to the technical innovation of automotive power solutions centered on SiC,” he concludes.