Blog: The Trends in Power Electronics – Take-Aways from PCIM

It was fun to meet people in a live environment at the PCIM Europe trade show in Nuremberg Germany last week. PCIM Europe gathers thousands of visitors and over 500 exhibitors to show the newest innovations, products, and trends in power electronics. This was the first PCIM for me, so I didn’t have a clear vision of what to expect from the trade show. We traveled to Germany with a six-person team to participate, present the COMET series, the newest product family of CooliBlade, and learn the latest trends from the leading players in the industry.

TOP3 current trends in power electronics

During the three days of PCIM, we had multiple exciting conversations with leading industry players. We also participated in the seminars organized during the PCIM. At least three clear trends came apparent during the PCIM that currently drive the power electronics companies forward.

The component technology of power electronics is developing quickly. Improving operating efficiency is perhaps the primary driver for developing solutions, like SiC and GaN based technologies. Efficiency levels of SiC solutions are approaching  99 percent, which is a huge step forward and enables designing new products with higher power classes. But still, many of these applications will need complicated liquid cooling solutions, which will lead to increased system complexity, size, weight and maintenance.

Another exciting trend in the innovations looks to be the chip-to-module interface. Major IGBT manufacturers are looking for the solutions to minimize the thermal resistance of this interface, that is getting the most critical in high power density applications. This is an excellent enabler for semiconductor products towards even more compact cases and increases the products’ power density. These technological solutions will, of course, challenge next the interface of module-heat sink. This interface will be the next bottleneck in the proper thermal management solutions and the role of it will be even increasing.

The third distinct development trend was to extend the power levels of air-cooled systems. Therefore, it’s necessary to look for new solutions as alternatives for complicated liquid cooling solutions. One trend in active air cooling is to go towards more compact and smaller form factor devices.

Rising interest in CooliBlade’s solutions

When it comes to CooliBlade, the trends mentioned above confirm our vision that there is a growing need for more powerful cooling technologies in the market. We believe that CooliBlade will be an essential piece of the ever-increasing ecosystem and innovation network that can enable the utilization of new and more efficient semiconductor components in applications of the most demanding electronic industries. We got a very enthusiastic response for the COMET product series introduced at the PCIM.

Even though COMET is primarily targeted for natural convection solutions, the NEOcore technology was seen as an exciting development platform in also for forced air flow applications. Especially the appearance of COMET and its integrated thermal channel generated a lot of interest among visitors. We also presented new CooliBlade ideas for applications with forced convection and concepts that can utilize the unique NEOcore technology in the enhanced thermal management of the chip module interface.

We will continue discussions to adapt our solutions to the products of several companies we  met at the PCIM. We can truly say based on PCIM Europe that our  “Highway for heat” concept is highly relevant and increasing in importance when reflected to the current market trends and customer needs.

CooliBlade vision is in the spot of power electronics trends

PCIM offered us a fantastic opportunity for our team to familiarize ourselves with the newest trends in power electronics and examine our development plans to match the advancements in the industry. We see our trip to the trade show as a success. It validated our vision that the NEOcore technology that we have developed and patented will enable many new opportunities to support the evolution of power electronics products to even more efficient thermal control away from the chip. This allows for even bigger power categories and power density, greater reliability and brings the semiconductor technologies to more challenging applications. We offer a highway for heat, and PCIM shows that we are on the right way.


Janne Suhonen, CCO