SC5: GaN Power IC’s: Technology, Dynamic Device Behavior and Design

Prof. Kevin J. Chen, Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Over the past two decades, impressive technological advancements have been made in developing wide-bandgap gallium nitride (GaN) and related semiconductors that now find themselves in a wide range of high-volume commercial applications, such as in light-emitting diodes and lasers, high-frequency power amplifiers, and power switching devices. For power electronics applications, the planar GaN-based hetero structure devices such as HEMTs (high electron-mobility transistors) are especially attractive owing to their high electron-mobility in the hetero junction channel, their small terminal capacitances that benefit high-speed operations, and the proven suitability of their device-quality epitaxial materials on Si substrates for large-scale manufacturing. The planar nature of the GaN HEMTs also provides an inherent benefit of high-level integration, which is key to the development of power integrated circuits (ICs). This short course will focus on the following issues:

1) Integration technology: how to integrate multiple functional devices with cost-effective process

2) GaN-HEMT-specific dynamic behavior relevant to power IC design: systematic characterization and modeling of dynamic threshold voltage and dynamic OFF-state current

3) Examples of GaN power IC’s: Gate driver, over-current protection


Prof. Chen received his B.S. degree from Peking University, China in 1988, and PhD degree from University of Maryland, College Park, USA in 1993. He has conducted R&D work on III-V high speed device technologies in NTT LSI Laboratories, Japan and Agilent Technologies, USA. Prof. Chen joined Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) in 2000, where he is currently a professor in the Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering. Prof. Chen has more than 500 publications in international journals and conference proceedings and has served as a consultant to the semiconductor industry. He has been granted 12 US patents on GaN electron device technologies. His research is currently focused on developing wide-bandgap semiconductor device technologies for high-power and high-frequency applications.