362.172 Emerging Devices in Power Applications
This course is in all assigned curricula part of the STEOP.
This course is in at least 1 assigned curriculum part of the STEOP.

2020S, VU, 2.0h, 3.0EC, to be held in blocked form


  • Semester hours: 2.0
  • Credits: 3.0
  • Type: VU Lecture and Exercise

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, students are able to...

  • understand the fundamental concepts of switch-mode power supplies in AC-DC and DC-DC converters.
  • understand the role of a power semiconductor device in classical switch-mode power designs and be able to derive its requirements
  • understand the different basic concepts of modern silicon-based power devices
  • understand the fundamental limitations of semiconductor-based power switches
  • understand how wide-bandgap semiconductor materials can push those limits further
  • understand the fundamental differences of the materials, the technology and the device concepts of wide bandgap devices vs today’s silicon-based power devices
  • understand the similarities and differences in reliability aspects and challenges of wide-bandgap semiconductor devices.

For students with high ambition, the class offers during the last unit an opportunity to inquire the basic principles and methods used in research/ development processes. Students will have the possibility to reflect on their own experiences.

Subject of course

Based on some basic power converters (PFC, buck, boost converter), the principles and criteria of the individual electronic components are derived. In particular, the concept ideas and technological challenges of modern power transistors based on Si, SiC and GaN are discussed. In the last part of the VU modern state-of-the-art development methods used in today's academia and industry will be discussed.

Teaching methods

  •  lecture with strong focus on discussion and inquire-based learning: this means that the student shall always be able to connect each topic with a clear question in mind!
  • 6 homework problems and 3 reading assignments will be given to assist the students in their reflection of the previous lecture and/or their preparation for the next lecture - the preparation of the homework and reading assignement should not require much of the students time but shall help to take as much knowledge away from the lecture as possible and encourage the discussion during class. One problem shall be presented by each student in class. Please focus on your thoughts and ideas in how to solve the question rather than the solution
  • lecture will be held in blocked form. Actual dates of the lecture will be discussed and finalized during the first lecture on March 6th. Students who would like to attend the lecture but are not able to join the first time on March 6th are encouraged to contact the lecturer directly through mail or TISS.

Mode of examination




Course dates

Fri13:00 - 15:3006.03.2020Seminarraum 362 - 1 Preparation & first Unit: Introduction of power devices and circuits
Wed16:00 - 17:0025.03.2020 - 24.06.2020 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu16:00 - 17:0026.03.2020 - 25.06.2020 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Emerging Devices in Power Applications - Single appointments
Fri06.03.202013:00 - 15:30Seminarraum 362 - 1 Preparation & first Unit: Introduction of power devices and circuits
Wed25.03.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu26.03.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed01.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu02.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed22.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu23.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed29.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu30.04.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed06.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu07.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed13.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu14.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed20.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed27.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu28.05.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed03.06.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Thu04.06.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed10.06.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Wed17.06.202016:00 - 17:00 Zoom MeetingLecture/Discussion
Course is held blocked

Examination modalities

oral exam (70% of grade) & participation in lecture by homework presentation or discussion (30% of grade). Each student shall present at least one problem/reading assignment during the course of the lecture.

Course registration

Begin End Deregistration end
01.03.2020 00:00 27.03.2020 00:00



Slides of the lecture will be handed out to students in class. Students looking for additional reading material on the foundation of Si-based power device physics might be interessted in the following books:

B. Jayant Baliga, Fundamentals of Power Semiconductor Devices, 2018

J. Lutz et al, Semiconductor Power Devices: Physics, Characteristics, Reliability, 2011

P. Horowitz et al., The art of electronics, 2015 (including basics of electronic circuits)

Previous knowledge

basic understanding of semiconductor physics including fundamental device structures (pn diode, field-effect transistor, Schottky diodes, BJT). The first lecture will briefly repeat those fundamentals required for the course of the lecture.

Accompanying courses


if required in English