Transient Thermal Modeling of Electronic Devices Using ElectroFlo

Gallium nitride offers spectacular performance advantages over silicon when applied to power switching – high voltage breakdown, low on‐resistance and unprecedentedly high current densities. GaN Systems in particular has developed a range of devices that fully exploit these attributes. In implementing these devices very considerable thermal and packaging challenges had to be overcome, and innovative solutions devised. This paper describes techniques developed in conjunction with ElectroFlo software for the modeling of thermal transients.

The transient thermal characteristics of a semiconductor device are very important in the prediction of device thermal behavior in different conditions such as switching applications. Knowing the thermal impact of pulse duration for different duty cycles helps to apply the device more efficiently. That is why transient thermal impedance curves appear in many MOSFET data sheets, application notes, and in the literature (see references).

Transient heat transfer is a very complicated process and it is not always easy to obtain results experimentally. Due to the extremely fast response times it is difficult to capture the transient reaction, while the very small device size makes temperature measurement difficult without affecting the behavior. For these reasons thermal simulations assume great importance. The purpose of this paper is to show how this can be done using the thermal analysis software, ElectroFlo.

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