SiC MOSFETs boost traction inverter design to 180kW
NXP, Wolfspeed and Vepco have jointly developed a 180 kW traction inverter based on silicon carbide SiC MOSFETs.

A traction inverter system based on silicon carbide SiC MOSFETs from Wolfspeed can operate from a battery voltage of 350V to 650V and is capable of peak current levels of up to 420A.

The design, shown at the PCIM exhibition this week, uses Wolfspeed’s C3M 1200V 13mOhm SiC MOSFETs packaged in an industry standard six-in-one style package. This achieves a power density of 26kW/L. NXP’s GD3100 gate driver provides the high gate drive currents needed by the MOSFETs along with fast short circuit protection.

The functional safety capable gate driver is coupled with NXP’s MPC5775E safety microprocessor, F6500 safety single board computer (SBC) and CAN FD to shorten the development time for traction inverters. Vepco Technologies built a pre-production prototype of the system and is offering engineering services for customization.

A previous version of the inverter design used a Fuji Electric 800V silicon IGBT Power Module with integrated current and temperature sensing for driving a 100 kW 3-phase motor.