6th July 2020

MuSiCA – Multi-level SiC Power Module for Aircraft Applications

Multi-level Silicon-carbide power module for aircraft applications

Overview

Clean Sky is the largest European research programme developing innovative, cutting-edge technology aimed at reducing the environmental impact of aircraft transportation. Electrification of aircraft will be the main technological contributor towards the reduction of CO2, NOx and noise emissions in aircraft.

MuSiCA, sponsored by the Clean Sky program, aims to deliver a modular power electronics building block which will be a key enabling technology for the electrification of aircrafts.

Power electronic equipment must maximise efficiency, reducing losses, while minimizing weight and volume. Higher power density increases the requirement for efficient electrical design and effective thermal management. Fast switching devices required for aircraft applications increase the importance of minimising parasitic inductances, and minimising power losses. Silicon carbide (SiC) semiconductor devices offer higher power density than the conventional silicon ones and thus offer the potential to reduce the volume and weight of power module packaging. It has been shown that by using silicon carbide semiconductor devices higher power density with smaller module package size can be achieved.

MuSiCA will design and supply an innovative multilevel power electronics module, an essential building block for the construction of high efficiency converters for on-board electric energy conversion systems.
MuSiCA will use innovative technologies to produce a Silicon Carbide (SiC) based power module with an application target for a 100kW aircraft motor drive. The main objective is to package SiC devices and associated gate drive in a manufacturable and reliable power module package to enable SiC technology to meet its full potential and demonstrate its competitiveness against current solutions. The hardware will be tested on a Clean Sky 2 motor drive test bed. The output of the project will be a demonstration of the manufacturability, reliability, low weight and volume of the proposed technologies with the ultimate aim of contributing to the reduction of CO2, NOx and Noise emissions is aircraft transportation.

Objectives and Impact


The target application is European Aerospace but the solutions developed will be applicable to other applications such as automotive, rail and renewable energy, where high reliability and manufacturability is desirable. The key objectives of MuSiCA are to: Increase manufacturability, long term in-service reliability, modularity and scalability, and maximise the performance of SiC power semiconductor devices.
The power electronics module developed in MuSiCA will support the Clean Sky ambitions by delivering an innovative multilevel power electronics module which will be a functional building block for all future needs for highly efficient on-board energy conversion systems.