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High-Voltage GaN Helps Inergy Disrupt the Solar Power Generator Market

Transphorm Inc. along with solar energy innovator Inergy and design partner Telcodium Inc. announced today that the upcoming Inergy Kodiak Extreme uses high-voltage GaN to reimagine what’s possible with portable power generators.

The soon-to-be-released Kodiak Extreme utilizes a photovoltaic (PV) inverter and battery charger both integrating Transphorm’s JEDEC-qualified GaN platform. These power systems result in a generator that is more powerful, lighter, and quicker to charge than competitive products.

And, given that GaN semiconductors run cooler than similar Silicon (Si) devices, the Kodiak Extreme does not require an internal cooling fan—allowing Inergy to develop one of the first truly water-resistant and dustproof solar power generators for consumers.

The Kodiak Extreme has a 110/120 Vac 2kW output. The generator targets consumers and professionals [construction, emergency services, industrial, etc.] by providing reliable off-grid ac power. The solar generator’s PV inverter and battery converter use Transphorm’s TP65H050WS 50 mΩ TO-247 FET and TPH3206LDGB 150 mΩ PQFN device respectively. They serve as close replacements for the Si IGBTs and MOSFETs used in prior Kodiak models given their standard packaging, which makes them easy to design in and heatsink.

Transphorm’s high-quality, high-reliability GaN semiconductors can increase power density up to 40 percent and decrease heat losses through traditional heat sinking methods while switching 2x to 3x faster than Si transistors. The Gen III devices also offer ±20V gate robustness and a 4V threshold, decreasing the need for additional circuitry and controls to ensure reliability.

The Kodiak Extreme demonstrates these advantages when compared to competitive products currently available:

  • 33 percent more power output
  • Minimum 98 percent inverter efficiency from light load to full load
  • Charges over 4 times faster
  • Fanless for harsh environments
  • Roughly half the weight

“We’ve been interested in Gallium-Nitride power systems for some time, having first been introduced to it observing the Google Little Box Challenge,” said James Brainard, CTO of Inergy. “The technology’s capabilities would allow us to create a highly ruggedized and efficient portable generator capable of bringing affordable solar energy to the masses. Superior durability, high clean power output, lightweight—these are all the attributes that our customers want. Working with Transphorm and Telcodium to develop the GaN platform for our system enables us to achieve that vision.”

The Kodiak Extreme will be unveiled at Power-Gen International 2018, giving conference attendees a preview of the industry’s first GaN-based portable solar generator. Commercial release is slated for Q1 2019.

Transphorm Inc. , Inergy
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