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"Inverter World" Power Electronics | Read the application of IGBT in new energy electric vehicles

Release on : Nov 22, 2019

1, IGBT definition

IGBT (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor) insulated gate bipolar transistor

The IGBT module is a modular semiconductor product that is packaged by IGBT (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor Chip) and FWD (Freewheeling Diode Chip) through a specific point bridge.

2, the use of IGBT

IGBT is the core device of energy conversion and transmission. It is commonly known as the “CPU” of power electronic devices. It is applied to converter systems with DC voltages of 600V and above, such as rail transit, smart grid, aerospace, electric vehicles, and new energy equipment.

The packaged IGBT module is directly applied to inverters, UPS uninterruptible power supplies, and other equipment.

3, the characteristics of IGBT modules

IGBT module features energy-saving, convenient installation and maintenance, and stable heat dissipation.

Most of the products currently on the market are such modular products, and the so-called IGBTs are also referred to as IGBT modules.

4. Summarize the function and function of IGBT in the simplest language.

Control energy conversion and transmission

5. Why do electric vehicles need IGBTs?

The function of the IGBT is the conversion of alternating current and direct current, and the IGBT also bears the function of high and low voltage conversion.

When the outside is charged, it is alternating current. It needs to be converted into direct current to the battery through the IGBT. At the same time, the 220V voltage must be converted into an appropriate voltage to charge the battery pack.

When the battery is discharged, the DC power that is passed through the IGBT is converted into the AC power used by the AC motor, and at the same time, the frequency conversion control of the AC power is performed. Of course, the voltage transformation is indispensable.

IGBT is a power semiconductor device, which can be said to be one of the core technologies of electric vehicles. The quality of IGBT directly affects the release speed of electric vehicles.

6, the working principle of IGBT

Take the air conditioner compressor as an example: the domestically specified voltage of 220V, the frequency of 50Hz, the home six points through the rectifier filter to get about 310V DC, after this DC power, you can get the variable frequency power supply to control the compressor operation, this It can convert the grid frequency of 50 Hz to 30-130 Hz, and use the power frequency to control the smooth control of the compressor speed to achieve automatic step-less speed change, which is the compressor is always in the best working condition.

In an electric vehicle, the motor can be regarded as a compressor. The two principles are almost identical.

7, the importance of IGBT in modern transportation systems

30% of the raw material cost of DC charging pile is IGBT

Electric locomotives generally require 500 IGBT modules

EMU requires more than 100 IGBT modules

One subway requires 50-80 IGBT modules

8, the importance of IGBT cost

IGBT accounts for about half of the cost of the motor drive system, and the motor drive system accounts for 15-20% of the total vehicle cost, which means that the IGBT accounts for 7-10% of the total vehicle cost, which is the second-highest cost component except the battery. It also determines the energy efficiency of the vehicle.

In 2016, the global electric vehicle sales volume was about 2 million units, which consumed about 900 million US dollars of IGBT tubes, averaging about 450 US dollars per vehicle. It is the most expensive part of electric vehicles except batteries.

9. Toyota is the only car manufacturer in the world that can produce its own IGBTs.

It is precise because IGBT is too important, Toyota has determined that the IGBT tube should be completely controlled in the development of the hybrid vehicle. Toyota is also the only auto manufacturer that can produce its own IGBT tube (self-produced, instead of buying other people's wafers and then packaging) ), the Prius has gained a strong vitality and is currently the only strong hybrid vehicle in the world.

10. China's high-speed rail IGBT market has been basically monopolized by Japan's Mitsubishi

Mitsubishi Electric's IGBT has become the industry's default standard. China's high-speed locomotive IGBT is completely monopolized by Mitsubishi. At the same time, Alstom, Siemens, and Bombardier in Europe are also using IGBTs of Mitsubishi Electric.

11. Infineon has taken over the IGBTs of almost all-electric vehicles.

In addition to Japanese manufacturers, Infineon has swept all the IGBTs of electric vehicles, and Mitsubishi Electric is intoxicated by the high profits of China's high-speed rail. It has almost nothing in the market below 2500V.

12. Cost of IGBTs used by Tesla

The Tesla Model X uses 132 IGBT tubes, supplied by Infineon, with 96 for the rear motor and 36 for the front motor. Each single tube costs about $4-5, for a total of about $650.

If you switch to a module, it is estimated that 12-16 modules are needed, costing about $1200-1600.

The reason why Tesla uses a single tube is mainly the cost, especially its power is much larger than that of a general electric vehicle. In addition, the design development cycle is short, and a single tube design has to be adopted.

13. Status of IGBTs manufactured in China

IGBT has been developed to 7.5 generations. The 7th generation was launched by Mitsubishi Electric in 2012. The current level of Mitsubishi Electric can be regarded as 7.5 generations. At the same time, the next-generation SiC technology of IGBT has been widely popularized in Japan, regardless of whether it is a large factory-like Mitsubishi. Small factories such as Fuji and Rohm have the ability to easily manufacture SiC components. China is currently at the third generation level, with a gap of more than 20 years.

Since the sixth generation, the potential of IGBT itself has been tapped almost, and everyone has shifted their energy to the IGBT package, which is heat dissipation.

The heat dissipation efficiency requirements of automotive IGBTs are much higher than those of industrial grades, and strong vibration conditions are also considered. Automotive-grade IGBTs are far above the industrial grade.

The key to heat dissipation is materials, and material science is a manifestation of a country's basic science. China is very backward in this respect, and Japan is far ahead, not only in Germany but also in the United States.

14, domestic IGBT is also starting

In October 2015, Shenzhen BYD Microelectronics Co., Ltd. and Shanghai Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd. signed a strategic cooperation agreement to establish a strategic industrial alliance to jointly build an IGBT domestic industrial chain.

At present, BYD has integrated the IGBT industry chain, including chip design, wafer fabrication, testing, and packaging.

In December 2015, Beiqi New Energy Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of BAIC Group, and China Electric, a subsidiary of CRRC, signed a strategic cooperation agreement in Zhuzhou to start cooperation in the field of new energy vehicles.


China's high-speed rail has a good reputation all over the world, and we are proud of it;

China's electric vehicles are also the world's largest market, and are in the ascendant;

However, the pursuit of core technology is still missing. It is not that we can't develop it, but it takes time and accumulation.

This situation is the same as the C919 big aircraft. We do our own overall design and planning, but it does not prevent us from purchasing components globally including engines;

But as long as you take time, I believe that with the cleverness and wisdom of the Chinese, mastering these technologies is just around the corner.