Reduced Switching Losses With Digital Gate Driver For SiC MOSFETs

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New technology enables electric transportation power systems to meet environmental conditions while maximising efficiency

In order to meet low emission targets to curb rising pollution caused by fossil fuel-based vehicles, the demand for electrified heavy transport is witnessing a sharp increase. Silicon carbide-based power management solutions are known to provide greater efficiencies for such transportation systems. To facilitate and promote the growth of silicon carbide MOSFET discrete and module products, Microchip Technology Inc. has now launched a new 1200V production-ready digital gate driver, the 2ASC-12A2HP, that provides system developers with multiple levels of control and protection for safe, reliable operation while fulfilling stringent transportation requirements.

Equipped with Augmented Switching technology, the AgileSwitch 2ASC-12A2HP ensures reliable, safe operation with multiple levels of control and a higher level of protection for silicon carbide MOSFET-based power systems. 

Key performance attributes of the AgileSwitch gate driver products include:

  •  Ability to dampen drain-source voltage (Vds) overshoots by up to 80% 
  • Reduce switching losses by as much as 50%. 

The 2ASC-12A2HP digital gate driver can source/sink up to 10A of peak current and includes an isolated DC-DC converter with a low capacitance isolation barrier for pulse width modulation signals and fault feedback.

The 2ASC-12A2HP gate driver is compatible with the company’s latest release of the Intelligent Configuration Tool (ICT), which allows configuration of gate driver parameters including the gate switching profiles, system critical monitors and controller interface settings. The result is a customised gate driver that helps speed the development time from evaluation through production and enabling designers to change control parameters during the design process. The ICT can save designers approximately three to six months of development time on new designs.

Other applications include charging infrastructure, energy storage systems, solar inverters and aircraft flight actuators. 

“The societal trend toward electrification of all vehicles including buses, trains, trams and agriculture transportation hinges on innovative power electronic solutions to get more productivity from less energy,” said Leon Gross, vice president of Microchip’s discrete product business unit. “When combined with our silicon carbide power devices, this gate driver technology enables engineers to achieve new levels of power density in transportation systems and industrial applications.”

The 2ASC-12A2HP gate driver is compatible with the company’s broad portfolio of silicon carbide power devices and modules and is interoperable with other manufacturers’ silicon carbide products. The company’s combination of silicon carbide power modules and digital gate drivers enables designers to influence dynamic issues including voltage overshoot, switching losses and electromagnetic interference. 

The AgileSwitch 2ASC-12A2HP digital gate driver is supported by the ICT for several commercially-available silicon carbide switches. The gate driver also is supported by a family of module adaptor boards to help designers connect to several different footprints, as well as the company’s Augmented Switching Accelerated Development Kits (ASDAK) that include gate drivers, module adaptor boards, a programming kit and the ICT software for silicon carbide MOSFET modules.

The AgileSwitch 2ASC-12A2HP digital gate driver can now be obtained from Microchip Technology’s website or a Microchip authorised distributor.


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