The application of semiconductor devices in power installations is continuously growing due to the improved performance and the resulting cost reductions of such systems. This advancement is made possible by adapting the device characteristics to the circuit requirements. This is particularly the case with reverse-conducting thyristors. In applications where soft commutation through an antiparallel feedback diode is used, new asymmetric device structures are possible which double the power-handling capability for a given turn-off time. By integrating the feedback diode into the asymmetric thyristor chip the dynamic devices properties are further improved and the number of power devices for a given circuit is reduced to a minimum. The analysis of important applications, e.g. PWM-inverter and chopper circuits, is used to demonstrate the ability of reverse-conducting thyristors to reduce the costs and the volume of installations, and to open new high-frequency applications. The important fabrication techniques of the reverse-conducting thyristor are described.
KeywordsPower Loss Reverse Voltage Temperature Excursion Total Power Loss Reverse Recovery
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