SOURCE: Princeton Power Systems

Princeton Power Systems

June 11, 2015 11:20 ET

Princeton Power Unveils Silicon-Carbide Power Converter Demonstration

30 kW Converter Shows 99% Efficiency, Silent 20 kHz Operation, Proprietary SiC JFETs

PRINCETON, NJ--(Marketwired - Jun 11, 2015) - Princeton Power Systems -- a leading global designer and manufacturer of technology products for energy management, microgrid operations, and electric vehicle charging -- has demonstrated for the first time a grid-tied bi-directional power converter intended for commercial use based on a silicon-carbide switching technology platform. The converter operates at 30,000 Watts power throughput and 480 Vac, using junction field effect transistor (JFET) devices provided by United Silicon Carbide (USCi) and Princeton Power Systems trigger cards integrated in a unique architecture. The converter demonstrated peak efficiency greater than 99% and sustained 100% power overloads.

Wide band-gap Silicon-Carbide devices have a number of advantages over their silicon counterparts. They can handle higher voltages, currents, and power, operate over a broader temperature range, and switch faster with lower losses. These lead to a converter that is smaller, lighter, quieter, more efficient, and with simpler cooling requirements. The power density and conversion efficiency of a commercialized product will be significantly improved over silicon-based converters.

"Technology innovation in power conversion has been at the core of our mission since day one," said Ken McCauley, President & CEO of Princeton Power Systems. "This product demonstration shows that silicon-carbide technology can play a role in highly-efficient and cost-effective commercial products in the very near future, and we intend to expand its use to higher power levels and ultimately across our product line."

The power stage at the heart of the converter was jointly developed by USCi and Princeton Power, using JFET devices from USCi and triggers and controls developed by Princeton Power Systems. The integrated product was designed and tested at Princeton Power's Nationally Recognized Test Lab in Lawrenceville.

"USCi is at the forefront of designing and delivering active switches based on silicon-carbide. Our JFET and Cascode technology deliver the only standard gate drive SiC switch solution, while having the lowest specific on resistance in the industry. These advantages enable the most cost effective SiC solution in the world," said Chris Dries, President & CEO of USCi. "The demonstration at Princeton Power represents a breakthrough in operating an integrated power block using commercially-available silicon-carbide devices."

The specifications for a commercial GTIB-30-SiC converter using silicon-carbide technology will include a CEC weighted efficiency of 97.5% in a double-conversion bi-directional architecture and will be compatible with advanced batteries over a wide DC voltage range, 208/480 Vac output, and UL-compliant. The companies are planning to introduce a 100 kW silicon-carbide-based product in 2016.

About Princeton Power Systems
Princeton Power Systems, based in New Jersey and founded in 2001, designs and manufactures state-of-the-art technology solutions for energy management, microgrid operations, and electric vehicle charging. The company is a global leader working with customers and partners across North America, Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. It manufactures UL- and CE-certified power electronics that are used in advanced battery operations and alternative energy, with built-in smart functions for ancillary services. The company solves power issues to allow continued growth of distributed renewable energy by providing energy storage solutions that are proven to work, even in harsh environments. Princeton Power Systems builds integrated systems and designs, commissions and operates microgrids for leading organizations including Fortune 500 automakers and industrial companies. It also works with nonprofit organizations. The company proudly manufactures its products in the USA. More information about Princeton Power Systems is available at www.princetonpower.com.

About USCi
United Silicon Carbide (USCi) is solely devoted to delivering the best and most efficient Silicon-Carbide power devices available in the marketplace. USCi was incorporated in 1999, and headquartered in Monmouth Junction, NJ. USCi's Schottky Diodes and Transistor Technologies are the highest performing Silicon-Carbide rectifiers and switches in the marketplace. Spanning voltage ranges from 650 V - 15 kV and current ratings from 4 to 100 amperes per device, we bring our Silicon-Carbide Products to market through a US based fabless manufacturing model. All of USCi's products are rigorously qualified according to the applicable JEDEC standards. 

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