The ‘silicon chip’ has been the backbone – indeed the enabler – of the data revolution, both in terms of data processing in CPUs, GPUs, memory, networking, etc. and in terms of power conversion from high-voltage AC all the way down to the 1V needed by the microprocessor. The problem is that silicon as a power conversion platform has hit its physical limits and it’s time for a new semiconductor – gallium nitride (GaN) – to take its place. A Si-to-GaN data center upgrade would reduce energy loss by 30-40%, which translates as saving over 20 Tera-Watt-hour (TWh) and over 100 M tons of CO2 emissions by 2030.

The first part of the article (published on Aspencore’s Power Electronics News) covers:

  • Gallium Nitride Speeds Past Silicon’s limits.
  • Consolidation of Data Centers – Hyperscale
  • Consolidation of Server and Telecom Architectures – HVDC
  • Why Gallium Nitride?

Look for part II coming soon, which covers:

  • GaN with AC Input
  • GaN with 400 VDC (HVDC) Input
  • GaN from 48 V to the Load
  • GaN takes over (Summary)