Transphorm, Inc. released details on a high-performance, low-cost driver solution. For use in low- to mid-power applications such as LED lighting, charging, microinverters, UPSes, and gaming computers, the design option strengthens the company’s value proposition for customers in those segments of the $3 billion power market.
Unlike competing e-mode GaN solutions that require custom drivers or level-shifting circuitry with gate protection devices, Transphorm’s SuperGaN® FETs are known for easy drivability given they pair with off-the-shelf drivers. This capability adds to the cost advantages customers gain when using Transphorm devices. The newly defined solution uses a high-speed, non-isolated, high-voltage half-bridge gate driver that further reduces total system cost without affecting the GaN FET’s or system’s performance.
“Our normally-off GaN platform is preferable given its ability to work with well-known off-the-shelf drivers. The ability to use a select driver is a major advantage. It allows customers to choose drivers based on varying degrees of performance benefits while retaining more control over the power system’s cost. This is particularly important for price-sensitive end markets,” said Philip Zuk, Senior Vice President, Business Development and Marketing, Transphorm. “With Transphorm’s devices that deliver fundamentally higher performance, customers can build a BOM based on the end result they need, reaching the required performance as cost-effectively as possible.”
Transphorm also recommends various other drivers that feature high isolation voltage ratings (control-to-output drive signals), short propagation delay times, fast turn on/off times, and programmable deadtime among other advantages—making them well-suited for higher power applications.
Low- to mid-power applications such as power adapters, gaming laptop chargers, LED lighting, and two- and three-wheeler chargers are price sensitive. The power systems in these types of products do not typically require advanced features like safety isolation. Therefore, using premium drivers may unnecessarily increase the cost of the bill of materials (BOM).
The half-bridge gate driver was tested with the TP65H070LSG, Transphorm’s 650 V, 72 mΩ device in a PQFN88 package. It can be used in bridge topologies such as resonant half-bridge, totem-pole PFC, sine-wave inverter, or active clamp flyback.
Test results show that the low-cost driver solution performs well at switching frequencies that are less than/equal to 150 kHz with or without the use of a heatsink or forced air for cooling. The solution ultimately achieved close to 99 percent efficiency in select configurations.
For more details about the above solution, download the AN0014 application note titled Low Cost, High Density, High Voltage Silicon Driver for Low- to Mid-Power GaN FET Applications here: https://bit.ly/3MTfQtB.