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Navitas explores what’s next for GaN at PCIM 2024

14th June 2024
Harry Fowle

At PCIM 2024 on the Navitas booth, the company was excited to show off its new portfolio of next-generation SiC and GaN solutions for fast charging, motor drives, power conversion and storage, and beyond. To learn more, Electronic Specifier’s Harry Fowle spoke with Llew Vaughan-Edmunds, Senior Director of Product Management (SiC, GaN) at Navitas, who shared his insights in the latest GaN innovations.

The Navitas GaN offerings, which utilise its GaNFast, GaNSense, and GaNSafe technologies to ensure the most efficient and reliable solutions, were a big talking point at the booth. Major technology updates and releases present were its newest updates to the GaNSafe which are enabling improved reliability, performance, and protection to key applications, and Gen-4 GaNSense Half-Bridge ICs which utilise GaN FETs with drive, control, sensing, autonomous protection, and level shift isolation, to create a power-stage building block for power electronics. These factors are driving costs down whilst simultaneously reducing size, complexity, and weight.

“We are really seeing GaN take off in various key application areas such as data centres, automotive charging, and motor drives,” commented Vaughan-Edmunds. These are all being enabled by the latest GaN developments in safety, efficiency, and reliability. “Data centres are ripe for GaN currently, the efficiency and footprint gains to me made are staggering,” enthused Vaughan-Edmunds.

However, these innovations aren’t just limited to a tucked-away power-hungry data centre, as Vaughan-Edmunds explained, and we are also seeing the commercial consumer market being affected by GaN advancements at a growing rate. “There’s been a really interesting uptick in GaN being applied to everyday household items such as washing machines or televisions where the gains of GaN power density can also shine whilst remaining cost-effective thanks to a reduced BoM.”

Looking ahead, Vaughan-Edmunds is enthusiastic about where GaN is heading, and excited to see its application in various industries. “Of course, we are going to see the areas GaN is already taking hold expanded on – but to look elsewhere, I think that AI is the next big area we will see GaN applied. The power-hungry chips we are seeing from the likes of NVIDIA can really utilise both SiC and GaN innovations. It’s not quite there yet… but it won't be long.”

GaN wasn’t the only thing that Navitas were excited to explore, with plenty of SiC news such as its new portfolio of Gen-3 ‘Fast’ (G3F) 650 V and 1,200 V SiC MOSFETs, which you can find out more about here.

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