16 September 2020
GaN Systems’ whitepaper outlines lifetime and reliability testing processes and results
GaN Systems Inc of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (a fabless developer of gallium nitride-based power switching semiconductors for power conversion and control applications) has released a whitepaper showing that gallium nitride is reliable, with the firm’s devices surpassing the criteria of both JEDEC and AEC-Q101 test specifications.
The whitepaper ‘Qualification and Reliability of GaN Power Semiconductors: A Collaborative Approach with Partners and Customers’ provides an overview of an enhanced qualification strategy and processes developed by GaN Systems and its customers. Results based on the application of these new test methods on GaN Systems devices are also demonstrated in the paper.
Existing qualification guidelines and standards for GaN power transistors are applied with silicon transistors as the foundation, which already have several decades of use and reliability data behind them. Since GaN and other wide-bandgap transistors are different in material and construction, qualification requires a closer look at how and which testing guidelines apply, says GaN Systems. Renewed reliability testing methods are especially important as the mission profiles that model electronic system lifetimes are ever changing.
GaN Systems and its partners from the global automotive, industrial and high-reliability (HiRel) industries have taken the lifetime and reliability challenge on to create an approach that draws considerations from JEDEC and AEC-Q and an understanding of industry challenges in qualification testing. The GaN Systems’ whitepaper reviews this, and outlines:
- The collaborative approach strategy which looks at device failure modes, transistor test design, and manufacturing process feedback.
- Enhanced product qualification processes using JEDEC and AEC-Q101 tests as a baseline and additional test methods to account for differences between silicon and GaN, and test results of GaN Systems’ devices.
- Definition of lifetime models by determining failure mechanisms and applying a failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA), builds parts, and test-to-failure processes. Test results of GaN Systems’ devices are also shown.
“The assumption that GaN is unproven or unreliable is no longer in question. In the last few years, we’ve seen global companies continue to use and introduce innovative products and systems using GaN Systems’ power semiconductors as the basis for design,” says CEO Jim Witham. “It is clear that the work we have done with our customers to create an enhanced reliability test set ensures that GaN Systems’ devices demonstrate industry-leading performance and lifetime in the most challenging environments.”