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)