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SemiSouth Announces New Silicon Carbide Manufacturing Patent

Thursday, March 20, 2008

New Silicon Carbide Process Patent Eliminates Significant Manufacturing Bottleneck

Austin, TX -- SemiSouth Laboratories, Inc. a leading provider of silicon carbide (SiC) based semiconductor technology, today announced award of its twelfth U.S. Patent. Further solidifying its leadership position, SemiSouth now owns or has exclusive license to a total of 12 patent awards in the field of SiC Power Electronics.

The new patent award, 7,314,799 – "Self-Aligned Trench Field Effect Transistors With Regrown Gates And Bipolar Junction Transistors With Regrown Base Contact Regions And Methods Of Making" enables SemiSouth to eliminate the need for implantation in the fabrication process of SiC power JFETs. This patent was the result of focused efforts by SemiSouth’s Technology Development lead scientists in reducing the manufacturing costs of silicon carbide power semiconductors. This will serve to deliver a cost savings of more than 10-15% per wafer.

SiC is an emerging semiconductor technology proven to reduce energy losses, enabling energy efficient operation of power conversion and power management applications. The commercial benefit of SemiSouth’s SiC technology is its ability to make power supplies, motor drives and inverters more energy efficient, more reliable and physically smaller in size.

One of the challenges of SiC semiconductor manufacturers has been reducing production costs. "With this patented technology, we are able to eliminate the need for implantation in the fabrication process of our silicon carbide JFETs. This not only saves on costs, but reduces cycle time and improves yield," said Kenney Roberts, SemiSouth’s Chief Operating Officer.

The principal markets SemiSouth serves includes solar power, computing, motor drive, automotive and mil-aerospace applications. SemiSouth’s SiC JFET is a replacement for silicon MOSFETs, IGBTs, or BJTs and can eliminate more than 50% of the energy losses in power converters used in these industries. In the price sensitive automotive industry, SiC JFETs are expected to revolutionize the design of hybrid electric vehicles, thus making them more fuel efficient and more affordable for consumers.

"This new technique greatly simplifies our manufacturing process and is a significant milestone in our ongoing cost reduction roadmap," said Dr. Jeff Casady, SemiSouth’s Chief Technical Officer. "We are very pleased with this patent award."

About SemiSouth Laboratories, Inc.

Founded in 2000, with headquarters in Austin, Texas and manufacturing in Starkville, Mississippi, SemiSouth is a privately held silicon carbide (SiC) based semiconductor company. As an industry leader in the development and manufacture of SiC electrical components and materials for high-power, high-efficiency, harsh-environment power management applications, SemiSouth provides discrete power devices and SiC epiwafers. SiC-based semiconductor devices offer significant advantages over competing products based on silicon and other semiconductor materials for power management applications.

SemiSouth and the SemiSouth logo are trademarks of SemiSouth, Laboratories, Inc. All other company or product names are the registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective owners. For more information, visit us on the website at

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