BMW i Ventures has announced a strategic investment in GaN Systems, a fabless power transistor company at the forefront of semiconductor technology. Gallium Nitride (GaN) is a wide band gap semiconductor material that allows for higher energy efficiency, smaller form factors and higher performance. GaN Systems focusses on GaN-based power transistors that can be used in consumer devices, data centers, industrial and automotive. GaN transistors enable next generation electric vehicles with higher power density, faster charging capabilities and longer ranges.
“GaN Systems’ power transistors have created new possibilities for engineers to build the power electronics demanded by today’s systems. Gallium Nitride-based transistors have become, in my opinion, the next big stepping stone in miniaturization. We have seen systems ¼ of the size while providing better efficiency than traditional silicon-based alternatives. With GaN, any system that needs power can become smaller, lighter and more efficient. These capabilities are particularly relevant in the automotive sector,” stated Uwe Higgen, Managing Director, BMW i Ventures.
GaN Systems’ CEO, Jim Witham, commented on the landmark investment, “From computer/phone chargers and data center servers to factory motors and electric cars, our customers have validated the GaN value proposition of small, efficient, low-cost power electronics. These benefits are widely recognized by the world’s biggest companies across all industries.”
“There are many examples of how GaN benefits power systems,” continued Higgen. “With autonomous cars, there will be the need to massively scale the data center infrastructure. Data center power consumption is one of the biggest cost drivers, and increasing the efficiency of power conversion will account for billions of dollars in cost savings and enable a more sustainable infrastructure around the globe.”