Strengthen Europe´s leadership on power semiconductors

PowerBase, an ECSEL project with 39 partners from 9 European countries, enables growth potential and strategic independence for Europe´s semiconductor industry in the face of increased globalization. 

Europe’s strengths are based on the deep technical knowledge and leading market position in industrial electronics industry, automotive industry and leading know how for More than Moore (MtM) based electronic solutions. It is of vital interest for the electronics system manufacturers in Europe to have early and fast access to reliable prototypes of electronic devices as well as competitive advanced manufacturing of such devices made in Europe.

Competitiveness of key European industrial domains heavily depends on the availability of leading edge ECS technologies. 80% to 90% of the key differentiating competitive features of e.g. leading edge industrial and mobility suppliers are dependent on the built-in electronic components and software. Therefore mastering these challenges for the future market position of European enterprises is of utmost importance.

The Innovation Action (IA) project “PowerBase” will follow a holistic vertical approach from material research across the entire value chain to advanced systems and aims to provide significant impact to essential technologies and key applications.

The following key challenges will be addressed:

  • GaN on carrier (Si and other advanced materials) technologies will provide major enhancements and cost competitiveness for novel power semiconductors; focused on e-mode (= normally off) devices (e.g. wide band gap based semiconductors).
  • Expanding the limits of silicon based power technologies in leading 300mm wafer diameter will improve the current limitations in on-resistance of Trench-Power-MOSFET and IGBT devices and extend the capabilities of already installed 300mm pilot lines
  • Pushing GaN power device technology and its superior performance towards the absolute GaN limit compared to current approaches taken
  • Setup pilot production line for fully processed GaN on carrier power semiconductors in leading 200mm wafer diameter (@IFAT) coexisting and compatible with high volume CMOS power manufacturing fasilities
  • New integration schemes to support higher levels of integration and engineered substrates that enable manufacturability of smart systems and higher integration and compact Power applications; Setup pilot production line for chip embedding (packaging) for advanced GaN based power products (@IFAG)  and for  3D integrated (power) systems (@ams AG)
  • Enable the entire value chain including substrates, devices, pilot production, packaging and demonstrator applications.
  • Prove target achievements in key demonstrators applications in the “smart energy” domain addressing compact power advancements together with leading European systems suppliers
  • Reliability and quality as key enabler to gain market acceptance for these new technologies.