IInnovative silicon concepts and nonsilicon materials such as SiC, diamond and group-III nitrides are finding interest for new generations of electronic devices operational at much higher voltages and temperatures than conventional lower-power transistors and integrated circuits. Improved bulk and epitaxial growth, processing, device design and circuit architecture, bonding, testing and packaging are all necessary for realization of new applications. It seems clear that Si will continue to dominate most power electronics applications for the next decade, while SiC is by far the most mature of the newer materials technologies. The group-III nitrides are also extremely attractive because of their excellent transport properties and the availability of heterostructures. It is likely that hybrid GaN/SiC devices will have a role due to the need for high thermal conductivity substrates for thermal management. Diamond appears to be trailing because of the inability to dope with donor impurities, although in principle, its properties are probably better suited to high-temperature applications than many other materials.
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