Silicon carbide epitaxial wafers (SiC epi-wafers), the main material for power semiconductors, with a diameter of six inches (150mm) and manufactured by Showa Denko K.K. (SDK; TSE:4004), have been adopted by DENSO Corporation for their latest booster power modules for fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs).
SDK’s SiC epi-wafers, launched in 2009, have been adopted by electronic device manufacturers for various devices including power supply for servers of cloud computing systems, quick charging stands for EVs, and railcars. DENSO adopted SDK’s SiC epi-wafers for its next-generation power modules recognizing the track record of adoption by device manufacturers, highest-grade epi specifications, low density surface defects, and low frequency of basal plane dislocation.
When compared with current mainstream silicon-based semiconductors, SiC-based power semiconductors can operate under high-temperature, high-voltage, and high-current conditions, while substantially reducing energy loss. These features enable device manufacturers to produce smaller, lighter, more energy-efficient power control modules. SiC power semiconductors are already used in on-board battery chargers and quick charging stands for EVs, and railcars. Demand for SiC power semiconductors is expected to grow, with full scale use in power control units (PCUs) for EVs in and after 2025.
The Showa Denko Group aims to contribute to the solution of SDGs-related issues through its business activities and become “a social contribution company” that contributes to the creation of society where affluence and sustainability are harmonized. The size of the market for SiC epi-wafer, which realizes efficient use of energy, is expected to be about 100 billion yen in 2025, and will grow further because of the start of its full-scale use as parts of PCUs. As the largest independent manufacturer of SiC epitaxial wafers, and under a motto of “Best in Class,” SDK will continue coping with rapid expansion of the market for SiC epitaxial wafers and providing the market with high-performance and highly-reliable products, thereby contributing to the spread of SiC-based devices.