Inversion of Power Semiconductor Components

Date: 2018-07-17
Number of visits: 10

Power semiconductor elements, or power components for short, are the core of power conversion and circuit control of electronic devices; their main uses include frequency conversion, rectification, voltage conversion, power amplification, power control and so on, and they can also have energy-saving effect. Therefore, power components are widely used in mobile communications, consumer electronics, new energy transportation and many other fields.

Among them, metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET) has been used in electronic commerce since 1980. It is mainly used in PC, NB and other consumer electronics motherboards and circuit boards. It belongs to the low and medium voltage market and has no use in the high voltage field above 900V.The invention of insulated gate bipolar transistors (IGBT) meets the needs of high power and high frequency. Since 1988, IGBT has been developed to the sixth generation of products and become the mainstream application of high voltage electronic products.

The global market of power components is about US$14 billion, accounting for 3.5% of the global semiconductor market, of which MOSFET is about US$6.8 billion and IGBT is about US$1.26 billion, accounting for 48% and 9% of the power semiconductor components respectively.Recent years have benefited from the rapid development of electric vehicles and oil-electric hybrid vehicles, the increasing proportion of automobile electronics, the rapid charging of mobile phones and the emergence of new applications of the Internet of Things (IoT). Power components play an important role in improving energy conversion efficiency, and the industry demand is gradually rising. In the future, the demand for electric vehicles'semiconductors is more than twice that of traditional vehicles. It is expected that the consumption of power components such as MOSFET will be greatly increased. 

In the past, the market of MOSFET and IGBT was dominated by large factories. Infineon, Ansenmei and Risa accounted for nearly 50% of the market of MOSFET, and Infineon, Mitsubishi and Fuji Electric accounted for 61% of the market of IGBT.Such IDM vertical integration plants, led by Infineon, give priority to new products with higher gross profit margins, and withdraw from the general consumer product line of low and medium voltage MOSFETs, resulting in the expansion of the supply and demand gap of MOSFETs, which has gradually made Taiwan factories feel the effect of switching orders since the second quarter of last year. It is expected that this shortage trend will continue.

For wafer supply, MOSFET and IGBT products consider that the cost of 8-inch hood is only 1/10 of 12-inch. For power components, there is no leakage requirement, and they are unable to achieve miniaturization. Both Taiwan and mainland MOSFET power components IC design companies have put into operation in 8-inch wafer plants.However, due to fingerprint identification, image sensor (CIS), power management (ICPMIC) and other IC products, the demand for information security has increased, and the demand for 8-inch wafers has also increased, resulting in an increase in the number of 8-inch wafers in the world.

The unbalanced supply and demand in the MOSFET market has given Taiwanese factories a rare opportunity to grow over the years. In upstream IC design, Dazhong (6435) and Jieli (5299) have more competitive advantages in PC market and consumer electronic products.It is expected that in the second half of the year, when supply and demand are still tight, the bargaining power downstream will become stronger, which will help its profitability. In wafer production, the world's advanced (5347) 8-inch capacity will be full, and the proportion of power management revenue will continue to increase to improve product mix. The future operation outlook is optimistic.

In addition, with the research and development of GaN-related separation components, the market demand for IGBT and other high-voltage components has increased. Qiangmao (2481) expects to catch up with the tide of IGBT OEM in the future, and actively introduce automation and vehicle gauge certification.At present, production capacity is full, with an average increase of 15-20% in 2018, and the follow-up growth can be expected. Although products such as MOSFET and IGBT have already been used in electronic products, the market situation has changed dramatically in recent years and the demand has increased dramatically, which will usher in a reverse attack of power semiconductor components.

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