First 1-inch Aluminum Nitride Wafer by Fraunhofer IISB
In 2022, our Materials Department succeeded in growing an aluminum nitride (AlN) crystal with a diameter of 43 mm in technology-relevant quality. Now Dr. Elke Meißner and her team from the Nitride Materials group have taken the next step and processed the first 1-inch AlN wafers from this crystal.
The availability of AlN crystals respectively AlN wafers in sufficient size and quality is the key for the manufacturing of high performance AlN-based electronic devices.
Aluminum nitride as a semiconductor offers an extreme breakdown field strength, a high material quality, a low number of defects and a very good thermal conductivity.
Due to the special physical properties of AlN, AlN-based devices for power electronics can achieve a performance beyond that of silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN).
Thus, AlN is suitable for the processing of super-low loss power transistors and has the potential to be-come the most important ultrawide-bandgap (UWBG) semiconductor for power electronics in the future.
From the crystal to the AlN wafer
The evolution of a 1-inch AlN wafer: Starting with a crystal, sawn into slices, through the trimming of these slices into round wafers, to a grinded and then finally polished 1-inch AlN wafer.