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High Thermal-Transient Packaging for a SiC-Based Solid State Circuit Breaker
Keywords: SiC, DBA, Power Management
Solid-State Circuit Breakers (SSCBs), or Contactors, are critical components in next generation electric aircraft, and must be small in size, fast in response, and have high reliability. Silicon Carbide (SiC) semiconductor switches provide a series of improvements over traditional silicon-based breakers in both electrical and thermal performances. The reported SSCB uses SiC MOSFETs mounted on cast-aluminum traces, cast onto an aluminum nitride (AlN) ceramic co-captured in an aluminum composite baseplate. The system is similar to a AlSiC and Direct-Bonded-Aluminum (DBA) approach. [Reviewer: Recent data generated up through May 2011 is first reported in this presentation.]

This presentation details the transient thermal characterizations of an SSCB having the highest density in development. Two sizes of SiC MOSFETs are evaluated to provide either a 30A and 240A SSCB rating. The 30A SSCB was constructed and tested to show a 300A, 500ns circuit breaking capability. The high density comes from allowing the SiC junctions to pulse to ~350C (in 5ms) from a 105C ambient baseplate. Successive electrical and thermal shock testing results are reported. Detailed simulations are given to show the transient thermal profile and subsequent mechanical stress-strain in the module.

The 30A/300A module was reported in IMAPS HiTEC'10 “Development of a SiC SSPC Module with Advanced High Temperature Packaging,” This paper builds on that paper adding the mechanical results and all new data on the larger, high energy density module with larger die. The Objective of the presentation is to introduce (or update) the use of cast composite metal-ceramic structures for high thermal transient applications, document the mechanical stress/strain performance through simulations, and then demonstrate the performance with physical test results. The module is in development for military applications and has not been field-tested. This is also developed for Smart-Grid applications in local distribution systems.

Theodore Baltis, Research Assistant
Binghamton University
Binghamton, NY

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