Bosch to proceed with volume production of SiC chips
Firm wants to become a global producer of silicon carbide chips for electromobility
After spending the past few years establishing semiconductor development in Germany, Bosch is now starting volume production of power semiconductors made of silicon carbide (SiC). Small, powerful, and extremely efficient, SiC semiconductors are made of this innovative material, supplying a growing number of automotive manufacturers worldwide.
“The future for silicon carbide semiconductors is bright. We want to become a global leader in the production of SiC chips for electromobility,” says Harald Kroeger, member of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH.
Two years ago, the supplier of technology and services had announced that it would push ahead with the development of SiC chips and enter production. For this, Bosch has developed its own highly complex manufacturing processes, which it has been using to produce the special semiconductors since the beginning of 2021 – initially as samples for customer validation.
“Our order books are full, thanks to the boom in electromobility,” Kroeger says.
Second generation of SiC chips
In the future, Bosch intends to expand its production capacity for SiC power semiconductors to a unit volume running into the hundreds of millions. With this in mind, the company has already started expanding the clean-room space at its Reutlingen plant. In parallel, work is also being done on the second generation of SiC chips, which will be even more efficient and should be ready for volume production as of 2022. Bosch is receiving support for the development of these innovative manufacturing processes for SiC semiconductors from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) as part of the “Important Project of Common European Interest (IPCEI) Microelectronics” program.
“For several years now, we have been providing support to help establish semiconductor production in Germany. Bosch’s highly innovative semiconductor production strengthens the microelectronics ecosystem in Europe and is a further step toward greater independence in this key field of digitalization,” says Peter Altmaier, Germany’s Federal Minister for Economic Affairs.