Semiconductor Today: SUNY Poly awarded $2m US ARL grant to make SiC-based ultra-high-voltage power electronics chips
State University of New York (SUNY) Polytechnic Institute says that associate professor of nanoengineering Dr Woongje Sung has been selected to receive $2,078,000 in total federal funding over three years from the US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) for advancing ‘MUSiC’ (the Manufacturing of Ultra-high-voltage Silicon Carbide devices).
By developing higher voltages compared with traditional silicon-based devices and enabling more reliable and robust switching devices in SiC, the research aims to establish a leading-edge process for the creation of power electronics chips with a range of military and commercial applications, from solar energy and electric vehicles to the electrical grid, for example.
Sung’s research will help to establish a baseline process for MUSiC. The proposed SiC high-voltage devices will be fabricated at the SUNY Poly-led New York Power Electronics Manufacturing Consortium (NY-PEMC) facility, located at the Albany NanoTech Complex and one of only two foundry service providers for 6-inch SiC device fabrications in the USA.
The power electronics-focused research will also support SUNY Poly graduate students who will gain first-hand experience optimizing the device structure, designing the process flow, and characterizing the electrical performances of the fabricated devices as they work closely with the NY-PEMC process team. More specifically, the students will be designing and optimizing the 10-15kV metal-oxide-silicon-field-effect-transistors (MOSFETs) - the switch components of the power electronics chips - using 2D device simulations. After fabrication, the students will provide feedback to improve the device design and the process.
“This latest award showcases the importance of SUNY Poly’s faculty research and how our institution and New York State have been able to push new boundaries to power innovative, high-tech advances,” says SUNY Poly interim president Dr Grace Wang.