Today, SiC benefits are not a secret anymore and progressively lot of industries are considering the development of new products including SiC technologies.
”The SiC power business is concrete and real, with a promising outlook,” announced Yole Développement (Yole) in its latest compound semiconductor report, Power SiC 2016: Materials, Devices, Modules & Applications. The SiC power market, diode and transistor included is estimated to be more than $200 million in 2015 and forecasted to be more than $550 million in 2021, with a 2015 - 2021 CAGR of 19%. SiC diodes still dominate the overall SiC market with 85% market share. According to Yole, this leading position will not change for several years. In parallel, SiC transistors are more and more present and should reach 27% market share in 2021. SiC solutions are diffusing step by step into multiple application segments: “We are at the opening stage of the SiC industry for power electronics applications,” confirmed Yole’s analysts.
This SiC technology & market analysis is not the first edition for Yole. Therefore, the “More than Moore” market research and strategy consulting company has been working for fifteen years on SiC technologies, associated markets and more globally within the WBG area. This year, this report is probably the most successful achievement with a global comprehension of the market needs and technology challenges.
Yole’s analysis details a relevant description of the SiC power industry landscape and lists the key related market data. It also proposes a detailed review per market segment, a full analysis of the SiC supply chain including new entrants, mergers and acquisitions and a technology roadmap. A special section has been also performed by Yole’s analysts to understand the current issues in China and identify business opportunities. With this 2016 edition, Yole confirms its leadership within the analysis of the WBG industry, its technologies and market trends.
Not surprisingly, the PFC power supply market is still the leading application with almost 50% market share (in revenue), consuming a large volume of diodes in 2015. However this market share is expected to decrease little by little after 2016. So far behind, PV inverters are close behind. Indeed SiC diodes and MOSFETs are now used by various PV inverter manufacturers in their products. It has been confirmed that SiC implementation provides several performance benefits including increased efficiency, reduced size and weight. In addition, it allows to low cost at the system level in certain power range. “At Yole, we have received increasingly positive feedback from the market”, said Dr. Hong Ling, Technology & Market Analyst at Yole. “And we expect other manufacturers to follow in the footsteps of the early adopters, leading to a rapid expansion of the PV segment in the coming years.”
Other SiC applications include UPS , motor drive, wind, EV/HEV and rail, all with different levels of adoption. Within the rail sector, SiC penetration continues. For EV/HEV applications, OEMs and Ter1 are testing SiC devices but qualification time is long…
The benefits enabled by SiC, the continuous performance improvement, and the cost erosion of SiC power devices will clearly fuel the implementation of SiC in different applications. “Under this new SiC edition, we propose a deep understanding of SiC implementation in different segments”, comments Dr Ling at Yole. Indeed this analysis offers a comprehensive summary of SiC power device market data (split by application), including PFC/power supply, PV, EV/HEV, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), motor drives, wind, and rail.
SiC power is creating many opportunities for many different types of suppliers. Indeed, attracted by the market’s potential, more and more players are entering at different levels of the value chain:
• At the module packaging level, Starpower just showed their SiC module in May 2016.
• At the device level, after investing in Monolith Semiconductors in 2015, Littlefuse released its SiC diode products in May this year, with the intention to develop a full product range. Yole has also identified other newcomers including Brückewell, YangJie Technology, Gengol, each with different backgrounds and different business models.
• On the materials side, Aymont, the SiC growth furnace supplier, has started to supply SiC wafers.
Furthermore, existing players will expand their products. For example, Infineon Technologies just released its 1200V SiC MOSFET and plans to go into mass production in 2017. Also, Fuji’s full SiC module will be available. As more and more products reach the market, Yole expects an acceleration of SiC. This growing market is generating plenty of opportunities for different types of suppliers: passive components, materials suppliers, test equipment suppliers, and more.