Evaluation of Advanced Silicon Carbide Half-Bridge Modules
Kelley, Mitchell Dwain
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Half-Bridge modules are essential to the design of power electronic systems such as dc-to-ac converters, synchronous dc-to-dc converters, and motor drivers. Silicon carbide (SiC) modules are a state-of-the-art solution for the development of high power and high temperature systems; this is due the material having several inherent superior electrical and thermal characteristics. Although SiC devices are state-of-the-art, they have not been fully evaluated and therefore have not become a widespread solution. In addition to the superior electrical characteristics of SiC, the thermal conductivity is also increased and therefore higher temperature operation can be achieved. It is crucial to develop an understanding of these devices by empirical measurement to fully understand the device and how it operates. In this thesis, the work required to develop a system for characterization of these modules is outlined. After a system has been developed, the DC characteristics of the modules will be tested vs. temperature and gate-to-source voltage when applicable. After the DC characteristics are measured for the modules, the switching characteristics will be measured vs. temperature, external gate resistance, and drain-to-source current in a classic clamped inductive double pulse test. This test is used to collect the required measurement data needed for analyzing the switching loss, reverse recovery of the body diode, and voltage overshoot of three different SiC half-bridge modules.