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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/D068827/1
Title: Technologies for SiC electronics and sensors in extreme environments
Principal Investigator: Wright, Professor NG
Other Investigators:
Horsfall, Dr AB O'Neill, Professor A
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr K Vasilevskiy
Project Partners:
Department: Electrical, Electronic & Computer Eng
Organisation: Newcastle University
Scheme: Platform Grants
Starts: 01 December 2006 Ends: 30 November 2011 Value (£): 510,385
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Electronic Devices & Subsys. Power Electronics
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Silicon Carbide (SiC) electronics and sensor technologies will play an important role in the energy and transport technologies of the 21st Century. Environmental pressures to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions coupled with diminishing fossil fuel resources will drive a continuing increase in the use of electricity as the preferred point-of-use energy delivery mechanism. The efficient and flexible conversion of electrical energy is increasingly accomplished through the use of power electronics, a technology and business area that is set to expand rapidly over the next decades. SiC, in common with other wide band-gap semiconductors, offers the potential for dramatic improvements in the efficiency and range of applications for power electronics. It is thus seen as an enabler for many innovative energy and transport developments, such as power-dense electronics for the more electric aircraft, hybrid/all-electric road vehicles and rail traction or for application to the electricity generation and distribution network, where high-speed high-voltage switches are needed.The principal aim of this Platform Grant is to facilitate long-term, innovative, generic research into technologies that will deliver SiC electronics and sensor technology to extreme environment applications. This aim will be achieved through three specific objectives. First and foremost the Platform Grant will facilitate the retention of a core of expert research staff and provide for their career development within a secure and stable employment environment. Secondly, it will complement current and planned research activities by allowing the Team to address speculative but strategically important issues associated with SiC electronics and sensors. Thirdly, it will address the wider development needs of the Team by providing funds for a range of international exchanges. We foresee an increasing international effort towards realising the benefits of SiC devices in real-life applications and systems and much of the proposed research is orientated in that direction. We plan major new investigations into applying advanced SiC devices coupled with new material fabrication methods to significant systems applications / in particular energy conversion (of crucial importance in all forms of renewable power) and new types of sensors for emerging areas such as real-time pollution monitoring in automobiles. Such developments will provide real benefit to society whilst opening up significant new commercial markets to those companies that can adopt these genuinely disruptive technologies. Alongside this system level perspective will be crucial developments in materials technologies (such as the application of new types of dielectric technology) and novel devices (SiC transistors fabricated using such dielectrics) that will underpin the dramatic improvements in system level performance that will arise from the application of such technologies.
Key Findings
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Date Materialised
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Project URL: http://www.ncl.ac.uk/eece/research/groups/etm/etm-sic.htm
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.ncl.ac.uk