Power Electronics for Electric Vehicles 2022-2032
Automotive Inverters, Onboard Chargers (OBC), Silicon Carbide (SiC) MOSFETs, Wide-bandgap (WBG) Semiconductors & 800V Platforms.
"Next-gen silicon-carbide (SiC) power electronics devices are taking over EV markets at 27% CAGR."
Electric vehicles are taking the world by storm. IDTechEx predicts 25% CAGR for the electric car market over the next decade, and growth for at least two decades in markets globally.
The emergence of electric vehicles erases the last century of automotive engineering as internal-combustion engines, with hundreds of moving parts, are giving way to an electric powertrain with typically under 20 moving parts.
The new focal points of innovation in electric powertrains are batteries, traction motors and power electronics. The technological advancements for these components are driven by the need for improved vehicle range, safety, lifetime and, of course, sustainable transportation.
The IDTechEx report 'Power Electronics for Electric Vehicles' focuses on the importance of automotive power electronics, analyzing the trends and underlying materials changes underway, alongside the massive opportunities being created throughout the value chain.
Automotive Power Electronics: Inverters, Onboard Chargers & DC-DC Converters
Power electronics is a type of solid-state electronics for controlling and converting power. For electric vehicles, it comprises of three key devices: the onboard charger, an AC - DC rectifier to charge the battery; the inverter, a high-power DC to AC converter for the battery to power the traction motor; and a DC-DC converter for the high-voltage traction battery to power a low-voltage battery (for hotel facilities).
Most critical of all is the main inverter, which operates at the highest power and facilitates traction. Any efficiency improvements here improve vehicle range without altering the battery capacity.
This is driving a rapid transition from silicon IGBTs towards silicon carbide MOSFETs, led by Tesla, which, back in 2017 with the release of the Model 3, introduced the first automotive inverter with custom silicon carbide MOSFETs incorporating copper ribbon-bonding and silver-sintered die-attach pastes, sourced from STMicroelectronics.
Today, growth in the supply chain for silicon carbide MOSFETs continues to snowball, with players including ROHM Semiconductor, Cree, Denko, Infineon, Denso, Bosch, Delphi, Vitesco (Continental), Dana and more, expanding production capacity and forming partnerships to keep up with the rapid demand. The report explores these supply chain dynamics, from semiconductor fabrication to inverter suppliers, and provides market shares using the IDTechEx cars model database.
For onboard chargers, the main trend is towards higher power operation. Here adoption of wide bandgap (WBG) switches is still important but less critical, as the OBC does not affect vehicle range. While onboard chargers under 4kW were the standard a decade ago, today most new models are arriving with 6 - 10kW OBCs, driven by battery capacity increases and the continuous demand for faster charging.
Higher rated OBCs are also important because most public charging installations are AC, meaning the onboard charger often acts as a bottleneck for charging times. For example, a BMW i3 plugged in to a 22kW AC charger will only charge at 11kW, because this is the capacity of its onboard charger.
Eventually, the endgame for OBCs is 22kW, which is currently the domain of luxury electric vehicles, with some exceptions like the Renault Zoe.
The report forecasts inverters, onboard chargers and DC-DC converters in unit demand, GW and market value ($ billion) with splits by power switch technology (SiC MOSFET, Si IGBT) and voltage level.
Silicon carbide MOSFETs, GaN HEMTs and package material innovations
Today, silicon insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) are dominant in automotive power electronics, but a rapid transition is underway to a sixth generation of wide bandgap semiconductors: silicon carbide (SiC) metal oxide field effect transistors (MOSFETs) and gallium nitride (GaN) high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs).
WBG semiconductors are a step-change, making power electronics devices vastly more efficient, power dense and capable of high temperature operation. This will become crucial for improvements to either electric vehicle range or cost reduction (by downsizing battery capacity).
As the semiconductor dies are no longer the bottleneck for high temperature operation and lifetime, new opportunities are created in the packaging materials. Novel silver-sintered pastes replacing conventional solders, copper wire and ribbon bonds, and improved thermal management systems and materials, will become necessary.
The report forecasts uptake of wide-bandgap automotive power electronics though 2032 and explores the resulting trends which we expect to see in the packaging materials.
800V - 1000V Cars
Wide-bandgap semiconductor switches are enabling more efficient high voltage operation (800V - 1000V), which brings advantages such 350kW DC fast-charging. The move to 800V is not as simple as rewiring battery cells: deep system changes and redesigns to the cells, thermal management system, inverter (WBG), motor and high voltage cabling is required.
Nonetheless, the situation is evolving rapidly, with at least ten automakers committed to models and vehicle platforms which will operate between 800 - 1000V, all with release timelines between 2021 - 2025.
800V will predominantly (but not exclusively) exist in the luxury segment for the next few years, which we define as a base model price starting above $50k. The move to 800V platforms does not necessarily guarantee adoption of silicon carbide MOSFETs but is a strong driver for it. However, for platforms above 900V like the 924V Lucid Air, silicon carbide will be the only realistic option.
The report provides forecasts for 800V-capable inverters using a bottom-up approach by the high voltage models and platforms tracked by IDTechEx.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
- 1.1. Report Introduction
- 1.2. Electric Car Forecasts (Unit Sales)
- 1.3. Power Electronics in Electric Vehicles
- 1.4. Power Electronics Device Ranges
- 1.5. Power Switch History
- 1.6. Benchmarking Silicon, Silicon Carbide & Gallium Nitride
- 1.7. 800V and SiC Benefits
- 1.8. Semiconductor Content Increased
- 1.9. SiC Supply Chain
- 1.10. Automotive Power Module Market Shares
- 1.11. SiC MOSFET & Si IGBT Inverter Forecast by Voltage & Semiconductor Technology 2022 - 2032 (Unit Sales)
- 1.12. 800V - 1000V Inverter Forecast (2022-2032)
- 1.13. SiC MOSFET & Si IGBT Automotive Power Electronics Forecast (GW)
- 1.14. Onboard Charger Forecast by Power Level 2022- 2032
- 1.15. Inverter, OBC, LV Converter Forecast (GW) to 2032
- 1.16. Automotive Power Electronics Market Size by Device ($ bn)
- 1.17. Automotive Power Electronics Market Size by Technology ($ bn)
- 1.18. Access to IDTechEx Portal Profiles
2. ELECTRIC CAR MARKETS
- 2.1. Industry Terms
- 2.2. Electric Vehicles: Typical Specs
- 2.3. The Global Electric Car Market
- 2.4. Plug-in Hybrids Doomed
- 2.5. Electric Vehicle Drivers
- 2.6. Electric Vehicle Barriers
- 2.7. Debunking EV Myths: Emissions Just Shift to Electricity Generation?
- 2.8. Fossil Fuel Bans
- 2.9. Official or Legislated Fossil Fuel Bans
- 2.10. Unofficial, Drafted or Proposed Fossil Fuel Bans
- 2.11. Electric Car Forecasts (Unit Sales)
3. INTRODUCTION TO POWER ELECTRONICS
- 3.1. What is Power Electronics?
- 3.2. Power Electronics in Electric Vehicles
- 3.3. Inverters: Working Principle
- 3.4. Full Bridge & Half Bridge
- 3.5. Pulse Width Modulation
- 3.6. Passive Components
- 3.7. DC Link Capacitors
- 3.8. Traditional EV Inverter Package
- 3.9. Power Switch History
- 3.10. Transistor Basics
- 3.11. Wide bandgap Semiconductor Basics (1)
- 3.12. Wide-bandgap Semiconductor Basics (2)
- 3.13. Mitsubishi Electric SiC Device Advancement
- 3.14. Benchmarking Silicon, Silicon Carbide & Gallium Nitride
- 3.15. SiC MOSFETs Vs GaN HEMTs in EV (1)
- 3.16. SiC MOSFETs Vs GaN HEMTs in EV (2)
- 3.17. Automotive GaN Device Suppliers
- 3.18. Applications Summary for WBG Devices
- 3.19. Semiconductor Content Increased
4. AUTOMOTIVE INVERTERS
- 4.1. Traditional EV Inverter Package
- 4.2. Power Device Types
- 4.3. Electric Vehicle Inverter Benchmarking
- 4.4. Silicon Carbide Size Reductions to Inverter Package
- 4.5. SiC Impact on the Inverter Package
- 4.6. Rohm Silicon Carbide Inverters
- 4.7. The Transition to SiC MOSFETs
- 4.8. SiC Inverter Experience Curve
- 4.9. Limitations of SiC Power Devices
- 4.10. SiC Power Roadmap
5. SUPPLY CHAIN
- 5.1. Automotive Power Module Market Shares
- 5.2. SiC Supply Chain
- 5.3. Power Module Supply Chain & Innovations
- 5.4. Value chain for SiC power modules
- 5.5. Infineon
- 5.6. Infineon Silicon Carbide Roadmap
- 5.7. Infineon's HybridPACK is used by Multiple Manufacturers
- 5.8. Hyundai E-GMP
- 5.9. Hyundai E-GMP 800V Inverter Suppliers
- 5.10. ROHM Semiconductor (1)
- 5.11. ROHM Semiconductor (2)
- 5.12. ROHM Semiconductor (3)
- 5.13. STMicroelectronics
- 5.14. Delphi Technologies (BorgWarner)
- 5.15. Cree Wolfspeed 650V MOSFET
- 5.16. Volvo Heavy Duty SiC Inverter
- 5.17. Other SiC Inverter Projects & Announcements
- 5.18. Ford and BorgWarner
- 5.19. Ford and Schaeffler
- 5.20. FCA (1)
- 5.21. FCA (2)
- 5.22. Lordstown Motors
- 5.23. General Motors
- 5.24. Chevy Bolt Power Module
- 5.25. Chevy Bolt Power Module (by LG Electronics / Infineon)
- 5.26. GM: Ultium Platform
- 5.27. Audi e-tron 2018
- 5.28. Delphi, Cree, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Volvo
6. PACKAGE MATERIALS & INNOVATIONS
- 6.1. Power Module Packaging Over the Generations
- 6.2. Traditional Power Module Packaging
- 6.3. Module Packaging Material Dimensions
- 6.4. Wirebonds
- 6.5. Al Wire Bonds: A Common Failure Point
- 6.6. Die and Substrate Attach are Common Failure Modes
- 6.7. Advanced Wirebonding Techniques
- 6.8. Direct Lead Bonding (Mitsubishi)
- 6.9. Tesla's SiC package
- 6.10. In Practice: SiC Die Area Reduction
- 6.11. Tesla Inverter Cross-section
- 6.12. Technology Evolution Beyond Al Wire Bonding
- 6.13. Baseplate, Heat Sink, Encapsulation Materials
- 6.14. Infineon
- 6.15. Continental / Jaguar Land Rover
- 6.16. Nissan Leaf Custom Design
- 6.17. The Choice of Solder / Die-attach Technology
- 6.18. Junction Temperature Increasing
- 6.19. Die Attach Technology Trends
- 6.20. Silver Sintered Pastes Emerging
- 6.21. Silver-Sintered Paste Performance
- 6.22. Silver (Ag) Sintering: Versatility as an Attach Material
- 6.23. Evolution of Tesla's Power Electronics
- 7.1. The Choice of Ceramic Substrate Technology
- 7.2. AlN: Overcoming its Mechanical Weakness
8. APPROACHES TO SUBSTRATE METALLISATION
- 8.1. Approaches to Metallisation: DPC, DBC, AMB and Thick Film Metallisation
- 8.2. Direct Plated Copper (DPC): Pros and Cons
- 8.3. Double Bonded Copper (DBC): Pros and Cons
- 8.4. Active Metal Brazing (AMB): Pros and Cons
- 8.5. Ceramics: CTE Mismatch
- 8.6. Multi-layered Printed Circuit Boards
- 8.7. Nissan Leaf Inverter PCB
9. POWER ELECTRONICS COOLING & THERMAL MANAGEMENT
- 9.1. Introduction to EV Thermal Management
- 9.2. Active vs Passive Cooling
- 9.3. Liquid Cooling
- 9.4. Refrigerant Cooling
- 9.5. Cooling Strategy Thermal Properties
- 9.6. Analysis of Cooling Methods
- 9.7. Power Electronics Cooling
- 9.8. Optimal Temperatures for Multiple Components
- 9.9. Why use TIM in Power Modules?
- 9.10. Why the Drive to Eliminate the TIM?
- 9.11. Thermal Grease: Other Shortcomings
- 9.12. Has TIM Been Eliminated in any EV Inverter Modules?
- 9.13. Double-sided Cooling
- 9.14. Tesla Model 3 2018 Liquid Cooling
- 9.15. Nissan Leaf Liquid Cooling
- 9.16. Jaguar I-PACE 2019 (Continental) Liquid Cooling
10. POWER MODULES 2004-2016
- 10.1. Toyota Prius 2004-2010
- 10.2. BWM i3 (by Infineon)
- 10.3. 2008 Lexus
- 10.4. Toyota Prius 2010-2015
- 10.5. Nissan Leaf 2012
- 10.6. Renault Zoe 2013 (Continental)
- 10.7. Honda Accord 2014
- 10.8. Honda Fit (by Mitsubishi)
- 10.9. Toyota Prius 2016 onwards
- 10.10. Chevrolet Volt 2016 (by Delphi)
- 10.11. Cadillac 2016 (by Hitachi)
- 10.12. Manufacturing Process
11. ONBOARD CHARGERS
- 11.1. Onboard Charger Basics
- 11.2. Onboard Charger Circuits
- 11.3. Tesla Onboard Charger / DC DC converter
- 11.4. Tesla SiC OBC
- 11.5. Onboard Charger Forecast by Power Level 2022- 2032
12. 800-1000V CARS
- 12.1. Historic BEV Sales by Voltage Level
- 12.2. 800V Platform Announcements
- 12.3. Why move to 800+ V?
- 12.4. Is 350kW Needed?
- 12.5. Slow AC Chargers Dominate
- 12.6. Moving to 800V Requires Deep System Changes
- 12.7. Fast Charging at Different Scales
- 12.8. Why can't you just fast charge Li-ion?
- 12.9. Rate limiting factors at the material level
- 12.10. Fast charge design hierarchy - levers to pull
- 12.11. Porsche Taycan & Tesla Fast Charge Comparison
- 12.12. 800V - 1000V Inverter Forecast (2022 - 2032)
- 12.13. Conclusions
- 13.1. On-road Electric Vehicle Forecasts (Vehicles)
- 13.2. Inverters per Car Forecast
- 13.3. Multiple Motors / Inverters per Vehicle
- 13.4. SiC MOSFET & Si IGBT Inverter Forecast by Voltage & Semiconductor Technology 2022 - 2032 (Unit Sales)
- 13.5. 800V - 1000V Inverter Forecast (2022 - 2032)
- 13.6. SiC MOSFET & Si IGBT Automotive Power Electronics Forecast (GW)
- 13.7. Onboard Charger Forecast by Power Level 2022- 2032
- 13.8. Inverter, OBC, LV Converter Forecast (GW) to 2032
- 13.9. Automotive Power Electronics Market Size by Device ($ bn)
- 13.10. Automotive Power Electronics Market Size by Technology ($ bn)
- 13.11. Methodology
- 13.12. Inverter, OBC & Converter Cost Assumption ($ per kW)