EpiGaN starts production of gallium nitride epitaxial material
EpiGaN is one of the key players in GaN-on-Silicon materials technology. The firm says GaN-on-Silicon will enable a new generation of power electronics, with performance far beyond current silicon technology. This material system will ensure more efficient energy use in power convertors, better power supplies for computers, motor drivers, inverters for solar energy technologies and greener transport with a smaller environmental footprint.
EpiGaN is currently offering GaN epitaxial layers deposited either on silicon up to 150 mm or, for specific applications, on SiC. Wafer diameters of 200mm are under development. The availability of large wafers which can be processed in existing silicon CMOS fabs partly explains how GaN-on-silicon technology combines affordability with great performance. Today EpiGaN is officially opening its production unit at the Research Campus Hasselt (RCH), located within the knowledge triangle Eindhoven-Leuven-Aachen. EpiGaN found there the necessary framework for installing its cleanroom facilities as required for the production of GaN-on-Silicon, while the location in the heart of Europe allows for establishing their business on an international level. Today, EpiGaN employs 6 people and is currently hiring more engineers and sales personnel to support its growing production effort. Last year, EpiGaN sampled its first wafers to Europe, US and Asia. The company is now takinga new step in ramping up its capacity. “We are very happy that the current installation will allow us to better serve our customers and new-comers in the field of GaN-on-Silicon market for electronics”, says Marianne Germain, CEO EpiGaN. “This is right at the time that device manufacturers are looking for getting access to this new technology, key for their future applications.” Ingrid Lieten, Vice Minister-President of the Flemish Government, adds, “EpiGaN is an outstanding example of what a strategic research institute can and must encompass: Imec has developed an innovative and state-of-the-art technology, the applications of which can lead to the solution of important challenges for society such as the energy issue and mobility. This technology has been transferred to EpiGaN. Moreover, this spin-off has a beneficial effect on employment.” About EpiGaN EpiGaN was incorporated in 2010 by Marianne Germain, CEO, Joff Derluyn, CTO, and Stefan Degroote, COO, as a spin-off from imec. In 2011, the company was joined in its venture by a strong consortium of investors, formed by Robert Bosch Venture Capital, Capricorn CleanTech Fund and LRM, enabling the installation of a new production facility. EpiGaN focuses on providing III-nitride epitaxial material solutions for top performance devices. The firm gives device manufacturers access to technology used in market segments such as power supplies for consumables, hybrid electric vehicles, solar inverters, RF power for base stations and smart grid.