Even if there are known weaknesses of SiC Schottky diodes while being biased at high voltage in dense ions environments, they can still be the best option for certain very demanding operational conditions. The compatibility of these devices is analysed in this technical note.
The use of wide-bandgap materials, such as SiC, enables higher switching speeds and higher breakdown voltages, allowing for smaller, faster, more reliable, and more efficient power devices, and that’s why it is of interest in Space applications, where the operating conditions are extreme (high temperature and high radiation levels), is growing fast.
The components are available in single-channel ATN-CNM-300S-2 and two channels ATN-CNM-300S-4; each channel has two SiC Schottky diodes in series, increasing the maximum safe blocking voltage of the device while operating under heavy ions. Actual flight radiation conditions can be tested under request as already performed successfully for the ESA-BepiColombo mission with a single die the previous version.
The Silicon Carbide power diodes were specifically designed for protection of solar cells arrays in solar panels mounted in satellites and space exploration modules. The first batches of devices are currently used for two European Space Agency missions, BepiColombo and Solar Orbiter.