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Materials (Basel). 2019 Aug 28;12(17). pii: E2760. doi: 10.3390/ma12172760.

Impact of Gamma Radiation on Dynamic RDSON Characteristics in AlGaN/GaN Power HEMTs.

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Department Electronic Engineering, University of Valencia, 46100 Burjassot, Spain.
Department Electronic Engineering, University of Valencia, 46100 Burjassot, Spain.
Centro Nacional de Aceleradores (CNA), Universidad de Sevilla, CSIC, JA, 41092 Sevilla, Spain.


GaN high-electron-mobility transistors (HEMTs) are promising next-generation devices in the power electronics field which can coexist with silicon semiconductors, mainly in some radiation-intensive environments, such as power space converters, where high frequencies and voltages are also needed. Its wide band gap (WBG), large breakdown electric field, and thermal stability improve actual silicon performances. However, at the moment, GaN HEMT technology suffers from some reliability issues, one of the more relevant of which is the dynamic on-state resistance (RON_dyn) regarding power switching converter applications. In this study, we focused on the drain-to-source on-resistance (RDSON) characteristics under 60Co gamma radiation of two different commercial power GaN HEMT structures. Different bias conditions were applied to both structures during irradiation and some static measurements, such as threshold voltage and leakage currents, were performed. Additionally, dynamic resistance was measured to obtain practical information about device trapping under radiation during switching mode, and how trapping in the device is affected by gamma radiation. The experimental results showed a high dependence on the HEMT structure and the bias condition applied during irradiation. Specifically, a free current collapse structure showed great stability until 3.7 Mrad(Si), unlike the other structure tested, which showed high degradation of the parameters measured. The changes were demonstrated to be due to trapping effects generated or enhanced by gamma radiation. These new results obtained about RON_dyn will help elucidate trap behaviors in switching transistors.


assurance testing; gallium nitride (GaN); high-electron-mobility transistor (HEMT); radiation effects; radiation hardness; total ionizing dose (TID)

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