Half-bridge evaluation board simplifies GaN transistor testing

January 04, 2016 // By Julien Happich
A manufacturer of gallium nitride power transistors, GaN Systems has launched a half-bridge evaluation board which demonstrates the performance of its GaN enhancement mode power semiconductors in real power circuits.

The fully functional GS66508T-EVBHB Evaluation Board is easily configured into any half-bridge-based topology, including synchronous boost and buck conversion modes, as well as pulsed switching to evaluate transistor waveforms.

Accompanied by a Quick Start Instruction Guide and YouTube video links , the Evaluation Board can be installed and used in minutes. Each development kit comes with full documentation, including Bill-of-Materials component part numbers, PCB layout and thermal management, and a gate drive circuit reference design to help system engineers develop their products.

Designed to provide electrical engineers with a complete working power stage, the evaluation board consists of two 650 V, 30 A GS66508T GaN FETs, half-bridge gate drivers, a gate drive power supply, and heatsink. The GS66508T high power transistors are based on GaN Systems' proprietary Island Technology® and belong to its 650 V family of high density devices which achieve extremely efficient power conversion with fast switching speeds over 100 V/nS and ultra-low thermal losses.

The 30 A / 50 mΩ GS66508T GaN power transistors are top-side cooled, and feature near chip-scale, thermally-efficient GaNPX packaging. At 1.5 kW, this device’s power conversion efficiency is rated at 98.7%, a value which can be reproduced in the owner’s lab.

The Evaluation Board provides footprints for output power inductors and capacitors so users may configure the board into desired boost or buck operational mode. Access to the transistor junction temperature is provided by both thermocouple pads and thermal camera imaging ports. Power input should be 9 VDC to 12 VDC, with an absolute maximum of 15 V. On-board voltage regulators create +5 V for the logic circuit and +6.5 V for the gate driver. The Evaluation Board operates in three modes: pulse test mode, buck/standard half-bridge mode, and boost mode.

Visit GaN Systems Inc. at www.gansystems.com