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Electric vehicles are increasingly driving on our roads, the majority of them are powered by a battery (BEV) and only a few models by a fuel-cell. The foreseeable future for passenger vehicles is in BEVs and for trucks perhaps in hydrogen-driven fuel cells, since trucks have to run for long distances without long charging stops. Nevertheless, both types of drive trains operate at increasingly higher voltage levels in order to decrease power losses (well-to-wheel), whereas this figure is around 70 % for fuel-cell vehicled and 30 % for BEVs. And for BEVs another point is important – the range and associated range anxiety as well as the charging time. The higher the DC charging power the lower the charging time – and the higher the charging voltage at a given current the higher the power according to P = V x I!

“The future of BEVs is above 1000 volts”, expects Peter Vaughan, Director of Automotive Business Development at Power Integration in Santa Clara. “Battery voltage levels of 900 volts are already common in electric vehicles such as the Lucid Air, generating only 20 percent of the heat losses compared to a 400-V sytem. Thus automakers are looking at 1000 and 1200 volts as the next step! And here 1700 V power switches and particularly Silicon Carbide MOSFETs come into play.”

Source : Power Electronics Europe News