Gallium Nitride Semiconductor Device Applications

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Can Gallium Nitride UV Devices Help Mitigate COVID-19 and Other Viruses?

Gallium nitride (GaN) competes with Silicon Carbide (SiC) as the two compound semiconducting materials for RF microwave and higher-wavelength devices.   GaN home battery chargers were showcased at the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES)

What is Gallium Nitride Bandgap?

GaN Wide bandgap of 3.4 eV

GaN powered semiconductor devices have ultra-fast switching speeds and can operate for a longer time at very high-power levels.  GaN packs a high-output power levels at size that is much smaller than both Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) and traditional Silicon (Si) semiconductors.

GaN can handle high-voltages and power levels.   This allows GaN devices to operate at extremes of hot and cold conditions with fewer variation in performance compared to both Silicon and Gallium Arsenide. 

While Si and GaAs cost less, especially silicon, GaN can do the same job with less devices and in smaller packaging.  This has actually reduced the cost of manufacturing high-power devices.

Covid-19 and Gallium Nitride

GaN Ultra-Violet (UV) lighting products have anti-bacterial applications that could be incorporated into hospitals and other health care fields to light wash people and surfaces to reduce or even eliminate both bacterial and viruses.

GaN transistors Applications

Wireless Communications base stations
High-power pulsed military radar.

Available Specs Include GaN-on-Silicon Carbide and GaN-on-Silicon

Gallium Nitride Semiconductor Manufacturers Include:

  • Qorovo
  • Microsemi
  • Wolfspeed
  • API Technologies
  • Analog Devices 
  • STMicroelectronics
  • BAE Systems

How Fast Is Gallium Nitride (GaN) Semiconductor Device Market Growing?

Gallium nitride semiconductor device market is growing under 5% annually. The growth is driven by consumer electronics, automotive, defence and aerospace needs.

Gallium Nitride’s wide bandgap has proven its use in power applications including RF power electronics.  The military has also implemented more gallium nitride RF semiconductor devices as they are more robust than tradition silicon, albeit at a much higher cost. One material that is suppressing gallium nitride adoption is the II-VI substrate Silicon Carbide (SiC).   Silicon Carbide semiconductors can also handle high-voltage power devices.  Many large semiconductor fabs already have the fabricating infrastructure to manufacture silicon carbide semiconductor devices.

Here are just some Gallium Nitridesemiconductor device applications including LEDs to illuminate the dark for automotive interior and exterior lamps and headlights, traffic lights.  Basically, anything that uses light bulbs, can be replaced with Gallium Nitride LEDs.