STMicroelectronics and Leti to Develop GaN-on-Silicon Technology for Power Conversion

STMicroelectronics, based in Geneva, Switzerland, and Leti, a research institute of CEA Tech, announced their cooperation to industrialize gallium nitride)-on-silicon (GaN-on-Si) technologies for power switching devices. ST says that this power GaN-on-Si technology will enable the company to address high-efficiency, high-power applications including automotive on-board chargers for hybrid and electric vehicles, as well as wireless charging and servers. The collaboration focuses on developing and qualifying power GaN-on-Si diode and transistor architectures on 200mm wafers.

Process technology, benefiting from the results obtained from France’s Technology Research Institutes (IRT) Nanoelec consortium program, will be transferred from Leti’s 200mm research and development line to an ST-operated 200mm-wafer pilot production line that is scheduled to be operational by 2020

Process Technology to be Developed on Leti’s R&D Line

Development of the process technology will be done on Leti’s 200mm research and development line and ST and Leti expect to have validated engineering samples in 2019. At the same time, ST will set up a fully qualified manufacturing line, including GaN/Si hetero-epitaxy, for initial production from its front-end wafer fab in Tours, France, by 2020. Also, Leti and ST are looking into advanced techniques to improve device packaging for the assembly of high power-density power modules.

“Recognizing the incredible value of wide-bandgap semiconductors, ST’s contributions in Power GaN-on-Si manufacturing and packaging technologies with CEA-Leti move to arm us with the industry’s most complete portfolio of GaN and SiC products and capabilities, on top of our proven competence to manufacture high-quality, reliable products in volume,” said Marco Monti, president automotive and discrete group, STMicroelectronics.

“This co-development, involving teams from both sides, leverages the IRT Nanoelec framework program to broaden the required expertise and innovate from the start at device and system levels,” Leti CEO Emmanuel Sabonnadiere said.