With increasing concerns of global warming and other environmental security hazards associated with the current practices of the energy generation process, governments worldwide are shifting their attention towards renewable energy. It is estimated by Deloitte’s report that renewable energy in 2019 outperformed coal energy by having a share of 23 percent in the overall power generation of the US. In contrast, coal energy has only a 20% contribution. Among renewable energy contributors, solar and wind energy are the major players.
To make renewable energy more profitable many technologies have brought significant momentum in energy generation. The energy generated flows through power electronics (made of semiconductor) to make it grid compatible. In this conversion process, energy efficiency results in a higher efficiency drop, thereby increasing energy cost. So, striking the right balance between cost and efficiency is challenging. Here is where the paradigm shift to silicon carbide changed the overall game. This is extensively identified as the most steadfast replacement for silicon technology.
Silicon Carbide is a semiconductor bandgap material made of silicon and carbon and known as a wide bandgap semiconductor. This material Silicon carbide is a very good conductor compared to a silicon-based semiconductor. The Silicon carbide devices can withstand 300°Celsius, whereas Silicon devices can withstand up to 150°C. In contrast to silicon, Silicon carbide devices can be highly resistant to higher voltage manifolds and handle more current and transmit heat away from the energy system, thereby allowing energy systems to operate at higher efficiency.
Moreover, compared to Silicon, Silicon Carbide has higher bandgap, thermal conductivity, and electric field strength are the prime reasons that resulted in wide range adaptability by power semiconductor devices.
Another important aspect of improving efficiency is switching swiftly, where conversion of low voltage to high voltage happens at fewer conduction losses. The Silicon Carbide based switches can switch on and off quickly, and despite some losses during the switching process, switching at higher speed controls losses and enhances device efficiency.
Renewable energy establishments, like solar, are not installed in controlled environments and are always exposed to uncertain weather conditions. So, devices staying very resilient to all weather conditions must deliver sustainable energy generation irrespective of the weather conditions. The innate mechanical strength and ability to stay resilient to harsh conditions create a positive impact and reliability of renewable energy establishments.
The silicon carbide devices deliver 98% efficiency by lower the inverter size and other dependent devices, thereby increasing its adaptability and extending the scope of its applications in broader horizons like electric vehicles and other industries. For this reason, the worldwide silicon carbide market is anticipated to increase with a CAGR of 15.7% from 2019 to 2025.