EV/HEV, motor drives, computing and storage propel power electronics market growth, from devices to passives, packaging and integration.
Power electronics: An application driven market
Last year we saw an impressive 8.4% year-to-year growth rate for power electronics in the main power inverter segments, including electric and hybrid electric vehicles (EV/HEV), motor drives and uninterruptible power supplies (UPS). To understand the power electronics market it is important to recognize that power electronics is application driven, not technology driven, unlike other ‘More than Moore’ electronics areas. In recent years this market has grown thanks to megatrends such as the arrival of the digital era or environmental issues. We can directly link the latter to governmental funds given by different countries for energy efficiency improvement, increasing sales of new power electronics systems.
As an example, the EV/HEV segment is driven technologically by CO2 emission reduction targets, higher efficiency requirements or less dependency on the oil industry. Today, full electric cars represent slightly over 5% of EV/HEV sales volumes, while they will represent 21% by 2023. Overall, Yole Développement’s (Yole) analysts expect the EV/HEV power electronics segment to grow with an impressive 20.7% compound annual growth rate for 2017-2023 (CAGR2017-2023).
Subsidies have an enormous impact on the renewable energy market. This can be seen in the PV market shrinkage predicted in 2018 due to the strong reduction of subsidies in China, which had about the 50% of the solar global installations in 2017. Nevertheless, Yole expects that the market will recover in the mid-term thanks to the decrease in cost and the increase of installations in other regions of the world, like India, South America or Africa.
On the other hand, there are some new power electronics segments that need to be developed for the proper expansion of other existing power markets. This is the case of the DC charging or the stationary energy storage markets. In fact, DC charging solutions need to be rapidly developed to follow the growth of the EV/HEV market with fast and efficient charging. Likewise, for further development of the PV and wind market, stationary energy storage systems need to be expanded.
In this power electronics industry report, Yole summarizes the different trends on power electronics driving applications, with the main technology developments associated with each application.
Power electronic semiconductor devices grew 11.7% from 2016-2017
The total power electronics market was worth $32.7B in 2017, with power ICs representing about the half of that. Last year saw a boom in the power electronics semiconductor market with an impressive 11.7% year-to-year growth rate, mainly due to the increase in sales in IGBT devices for EV/HEVs and motor drives. Demand for computing and storage and for automotive segments also boosted the MOSFET device market by 8.3% in 2017.
Yole expects a very positive perspective over the next five years, with a CAGR2017-2023 of over 4% for the power device market. This will be driven mainly by EV/HEVs, which will account for almost $1.8B worth of MOSFETs and more than $1.9B in the IGBT market, including both discretes and modules. MOSFET demand will also be driven by networking and telecommunications, which is booming with an 8.3% CAGR2017-2023 due to the installation of 5G network infrastructure.
Many manufacturers are therefore enlarging their production capacities to fulfil these needs with short shipment times. Infineon is expanding its production capacity with 300mm fabs for power electronics devices, including IGBTs. As many applications in China are driven by its big domestic demand, it is also putting a lot of effort and funding into developing internal power electronics device technology and manufacturing know-how to expand downstream within the supply chain.
Technology still matters
The power electronics market needs to evolve with regards to efficiency and thermal management due to the large power loads systems are handling. The main players need to invest in technology development to reduce device and system costs, to reduce weight and size without impairing thermal management or reliability. Optimized solutions are being implemented at device, packaging, module, power stack or inverter levels. Passive components have to be adapted to fully use the potential of new semiconductor materials, devices and system designs.
Yole sees a strong improvement axis that relies on device development, either in silicon or in wide band gap materials like SiC or GaN. Therefore, end-users could achieve higher system efficiencies, going to higher frequencies and higher power densities by using more compact systems or even integrating them in a single chip. However, even as SiC penetrates different applications, silicon solutions are still being developed and optimized for high efficiency systems. As an illustration, we saw the new generation of Infineon’s IGBT coming to the market last year.
In this report, Yole’s analysts summarize different technology improvements and trends for the full inverter components. That includes the challenger materials SiC and GaN, which must still battle to ramp up production. We show how technology advances are linked to application needs like the power module innovations required for EV/HEV.
Objectives of the Report
This report’s objectives are to:
- Assess the market for wafers, devices, modules and inverters
- Understand the market dynamics for the whole power electronics industry
- Identify the key drivers that will shape the market in the future
- To have an overview on the different components used in power electronics and its integration
- Understand the main technological challenges to overcome and the solutions developed so far
- Provide a clear overview of the different applications driving the power electronics business
- Present data ranking the power electronics industry leaders, describing supply chain consolidation, the latest M&A activity and future trends in the power player landscape
- Update on power electronics wafer level market from 2017 to 2023
- Update on power electronics major discrete and module segments including IGBT, MOSFET and Power IC from 2017 to 2023
- Update of power electronics inverter market from 2017 to 2023
- Market and technology trends for each power electronics application
- Focus on EV/HEV market and technology trends
- Passive components, batteries, power stack technological trends
- Harsh environments and thermal management in power electronics
- Focus on packaging trends
- Wide band gap section update, with GaN and SiC market
- Other compound semiconductors for power electronics
- Company profile updates with 2017 revenues and key features
- Power electronics player ranking and landscape analysis for 201
- Analysis of the latest M&A activity