Onsemi opens chip test lab in Slovakia

The US semiconductor manufacturer Onsemi has opened an application test laboratory in Piestany, Slovakia. The lab is dedicated to the further development of system solutions for electric cars and plug-in hybrids.

Image: Onsemi

The laboratory offers special equipment for the development and testing of upcoming silicon and silicon carbide semiconductor elements in cooperation with car manufacturers and suppliers, as the US company reports. Semiconductors for the energy infrastructure are also to be developed there. The number of people to work at the site is not mentioned in the announcement or in a LinkedIn post about the opening.

The new site has two high-voltage laboratories that focus on the development of systems and devices as well as the evaluation of SiC/Si traction inverters and ACDC/DCDC power converters. The laboratories can not only carry out precise measurements and record them, but also simulate some conditions in use in vehicles – for example, tests in the temperature range from -50 to +220 degrees Celsius are possible.

As laser welding facilities, clean rooms and workshops have also been set up in Piestany, Onsemi says that rapid prototyping and testing of next-generation system solutions is also possible.

Semiconductor components are very important for highly efficient power conversion both in the powertrains of electric cars and in the charging stations – the lower the losses during conversion, the more efficient the overall system is, as the cooling requirement is also reduced, for example. And in general, less electricity needs to be generated to charge and operate the vehicles. Such efficient semiconductors can also be used in the field of renewable energies.

In recent months, Onsemi has concluded supply contracts for SiC semiconductors with Volkswagen, BMW, Zeekr, Stellantis, Vitesco and Magna.



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