GaN power semiconductor devices have been the recent focus of intense development efforts due to the promising material properties of GaN for next-generation power electronics applications. For power switching and rectifying applications, the ruggedness in breakdown is a critical requirement as addition of snubber circuits reduce the performance and efficiency of the system. Lateral GaN high-electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) have been commercialized up to 900 V class recently, but they lack avalanche capabilities. Vertical GaN transistors demonstrate several advantages over lateral GaN HEMT: 1) higher breakdown voltage (BV) and current for a given chip area, 2) higher reliability, 3) easier thermal management, 4) avalanche capabilities, and 5) short-circuit robustness.
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