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SDK Expands Capacity for Producing High-Grade SiC Epitaxial Wafers
—Starts Mass Production of HGE, Contributing to Diffusion of “Full SiC” Power Modules—

Showa Denko K.K.
June 9, 2016

Showa Denko (SDK) (TOKYO: 4004) has expanded its capacity for producing high-quality-grade silicon carbide (SiC) epitaxial wafers for power devices, which have already been marketed under the trade name of “High-Grade Epi” (HGE), and started mass production of HGE wafers.  The expanded HGE production facility has a capacity to produce 3,000 wafers per month*1.

HGE is a grade of SiC epitaxial wafer with very low crystal defect density, developed and commercialized by SDK in October 2015.*2  Since the launch of HGE, SDK has been working on sample shipment of it to device manufacturers at home and abroad, successfully getting good reputation among them.  HGE contributes to an improvement in reliability of SiC-MOSFET*3 by controlling the number of basal plane dislocation*4, which is the typical crystal defect, within 0.1/cm2.  Moreover, the establishment of technology to lower the number of defects enabled us to mass-produce thick-film epitaxial wafers*5 and p-type epitaxial wafers*6, both for potential use in bipolar power devices.  These special epitaxial wafers were said to be difficult to produce with conventional technologies.  We expect that thick-film HGE we market will significantly contribute to the development of SiC-IGBT*7, which can be used as ultra-high-voltage devices for power generation/transmission systems.

The size of the market for SiC epitaxial wafers for power devices is expected to reach 100 billion in 2025 as the early use of SiC power devices in vehicles is under consideration.  SDK will continue meeting the need of the market for high-quality SiC epitaxial wafers, aiming to contribute to the improvement in energy efficiency of power devices.



[Notes]

  • *1    This number is based on a conversion into SiC epitaxial wafers for power devices
    having withstanding voltage of 1,200 V.
  • *2    For detail, please see SDK’s news release announced on October 2, 2015.
    SDK to Offer SiC Epitaxial Wafers with Very Low Defect Density
  • *3    MOSFET: metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor
    MOSFET is good to be used in logic circuits that require high-speed switching,
    because its rate of power loss is small.
  • *4    Basal plane dislocation: Dislocation that occurs on a basal plane of a single crystal SiC.
  • *5    These thick-film epitaxial wafers have thickness of about 100µm or more. (1µm=1/1,000mm)
  • *6    P-type: A type of electrical conduction in semiconductors
    In p-type semiconductors, positively charged holes are the majority carriers of electric energy. 
    In n-type semiconductors, negatively charged electrons are the majority carriers of electric energy.
  • *7    IGBT: insulated gate bipolar transistor
    SiC-IGBT has both high-speed-switching capabilities equal to MOSFET
    and controls on high voltage and high current equal to bipolar transistor.

The number of defects per 1cm2 of HGE

  4-inch HGE 6-inch HGE
  Thickness 30μm  Thickness 100μm Thickness 30μm
Surface defect 表面欠陥、従来品0.04/cm2
0.33/cm2

0.04/cm2
Basal plane dislocation 基底面転位、従来品
0.02/cm2

0.01/cm2

◆  Media contact: Public Relations Office, Showa Denko K.K. (Phone: 81-3-5470-3235)

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