An experimental investigation of the trade-off between switching losses and EMI generation with hard-switched All-Si, Si-SiC and All-SiC device combinations

Niall Oswald, Philip Anthony, Neville McNeill, Bernard Stark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

210 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Silicon carbide (SiC) switching power devices (MOSFETs, JFETs) of 1200 V rating are now commercially available, and in conjunction with SiC diodes, they offer substantially reduced switching losses relative to silicon (Si) insulated gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) paired with fast-recovery diodes. Low-voltage industrial variable-speed drives are a key application for 1200 V devices, and there is great interest in the replacement of the Si IGBTs and diodes that presently dominate in this application with SiC-based devices. However, much of the performance benefit of SiC-based devices is due to their increased switching speeds ( di/dt, dv/ dt), which raises the issues of increased electromagnetic interference (EMI) generation and detrimental effects on the reliability of inverter-fed electrical machines. In this paper, the tradeoff between switching losses and the high-frequency spectral amplitude of the device switching waveforms is quantified experimentally for all-Si, Si-SiC, and all-SiC device combinations. While exploiting the full switching-speed capability of SiC-based devices results in significantly increased EMI generation, the all-SiC combination provides a 70% reduction in switching losses relative to all-Si when operated at comparable dv/dt. It is also shown that the loss-EMI tradeoff obtained with the Si-SiC device combination can be significantly improved by driving the IGBT with a modified gate voltage profile.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2393-2407
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Power Electronics
Volume29
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • silicon carbide
  • voltage measurement
  • silicon compounds
  • electromagnetic interference

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