GaN power ICs are green
By Navitas SemiconductorElectronics Power Supply / Management Semiconductors Environmental Supply Chain environmental GaN power semiconductor
Each clean component shipped saves 4kg CO2 per year
A recent sustainability report produced by Navitas Semiconductor, an industry-leader in gallium nitride (GaN) power ICs, highlights how the firm’s GaN technology supports global carbon ‘net-zero’ ambitions by reducing its customers’ CO2 footprints and accelerating the evolution from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources and electricity-based applications.
The report comprehensively quantifies the positive impact of GaN power semiconductors on climate change based on global standards. The report includes a third-party Lifecycle Assessment (LCA) of GaN technology according to ISO14040/14044, the international standard for assessing environmental impacts throughout a product’s life cycle — from raw material acquisition through production, use, end-of-life treatment, recycling and final disposal. The Navitas report also quantifies corporate Greenhouse Gas (GHG) impacts through third-party assessments.
Gallium metal is derived as a by-product when smelting aluminum, and nitrogen is readily-available in our atmosphere, so GaN has a minimal material-origin CO2 footprint, is easily sourced and low cost. GaN is also non-toxic and free from conflict-mineral concerns. And although GaN is an advanced ‘wide band-gap’ semiconductor material, GaN power IC devices can be manufactured using older, well established and available CMOS processing equipment (350nm). As a result, GaN device production today yields 3-5x greater output for a given equipment set when compared to traditional silicon power devices.
GaN power ICs are much smaller than silicon chips
As a next-gen power semiconductor, GaN runs up to 20x faster than legacy silicon and enables up to 3x more power and 3x faster charging in half the size and weight. Navitas’ GaNFast power ICs integrate GaN power and drive plus protection and control to deliver simple, small, fast and efficient performance. Due to advanced-material performance and Navitas’ proprietary AllGaN process design kit, GaN power ICs are much smaller than silicon chips, and have 4x-10x lower CO2 footprint to manufacture and ship.
High-efficiency, high-speed applications using GaN power ICs are smaller, lighter and use less material and less energy than silicon systems. For example, a 65W laptop adapter with GaN has up to 30% lower footprint – delivering a net-benefit of over 4kg of CO2 reduction per GaN IC shipped. In data centers, GaN has the potential to save over 10-million tons of CO2/year through increased efficiency. When GaN is considered for EV applications like on-board chargers, dc-dc converters and traction drive, it is estimated that an upgrade from silicon to GaN could accelerate the worldwide transition from internal combustion engines to EVs by 3 years, and reduce total road-sector emissions by 20% per year. The report also explains how GaN ICs drive down cost-per-watt of energy conversion and storage in solar power applications to support cost reductions of up to 25% – reducing payback periods and accelerating adoption.
“Our technologies can increase our customers’ ability to achieve their own CO2 emissions targets by reducing the end-use electricity and material requirements of their products,” says Navitas CEO and co-founder Gene Sheridan. “We contribute to power and emission reductions in every major market segment across mobile, consumer, industrial, computing, communications and transportation, and strive to be a critical enabler of improvements in electrification and energy efficiency to meet the Paris Accord’s Net-Zero goals as highlighted in the IEA’s World Energy Outlook 2021 report.”
Navitas Semiconductor is a leading supplier of GaN power ICs. GaN power ICs integrate GaN power with drive, control and protection to enable faster charging, higher power density and greater energy savings for mobile, consumer, enterprise, eMobility and new energy markets.