Renewable Energy Thrust Nets GeneSiC Semiconductor $1.5M from US Department of Energy

DULLES, VA, November 12, 2008 – The US Department of Energy has awarded GeneSiC Semiconductor two separate grants totaling $1.5M for the development of high-voltage silicon carbide (SiC) devices that will serve as key enablers for wind- and solar-power integration with the nation’s electricity grid.

“These awards demonstrate the DOE’s confidence in GeneSiC’s capabilities, as well as its commitment to alternative energy solutions,” notes Dr. Ranbir Singh, president of GeneSiC. “An integrated, efficient power grid is critical to the nation’s energy future — and the SiC devices we’re developing are critical for overcoming the inefficiencies of conventional silicon technologies.”

The first award is a $750k Phase II SBIR grant for the development of fast, ultra-high-voltage SiC bipolar devices. The second is a $750k Phase II STTR grant for the development of optically gated high-power SiC switches.

Silicon carbide is a next-generation semiconductor material with the ability to handle 10x the voltage and 100x the current of silicon, making it ideally suited to high-power applications such as renewable energy (wind and solar) installations and electrical-grid control systems.

Specifically, the two awards are for:

  • Development of high-frequency, multi-kilovolt SiC gate-turn-off (GTO) power devices. Government and commercial applications include power-management and conditioning systems for ships, the utility industry, and medical imaging.
  • Design and fabrication of optically gated high-voltage, high-power SiC switching devices. Using fiber-optics to switch power is an ideal solution for environments plagued by electro-magnetic interference (EMI), and applications that require ultra high-voltages.

The SiC devices GeneSiC is developing serve a variety of energy storage, power grid, and military applications, which are receiving increasing attention as the world focuses on more efficient and cost-effective energy-management solutions.

Based outside Washington, DC in Dulles, Virginia, GeneSiC Semiconductor Inc. is a leading innovator in high-temperature, high-power and ultra high-voltage silicon carbide (SiC) devices. Current development projects include high-temperature rectifiers, field-effect transistors (FETs) and bipolar devices, as well as particle & photonic detectors. GeneSiC has prime/sub-contracts from major US Government agencies, including the Department of Energy, Navy, DARPA, and the Department of Homeland Security. The company is currently experiencing substantial growth, and hiring qualified personnel in power-device and detector design, fabrication, and testing. To find out more, please visit

GeneSiC Semiconductor Awarded Multiple US Department of Energy SBIR and STTR Grants

DULLES, VA, October 23, 2007 — GeneSiC Semiconductor Inc., a fast-rising innovator of high-temperature, high-power and ultra high-voltage silicon carbide (SiC) devices, announced that is has been awarded three separate small business grants from the US Department of Energy during FY07. The SBIR and STTR grants will be used by GeneSiC to demonstrate novel high-voltage SiC devices for a variety of energy storage, power grid, high-temperature and high-energy physics applications. Energy storage and power grid applications are receiving increasing attention as the world focuses on more efficient and cost-effective energy management solutions.

“We are pleased with the level of confidence expressed by various offices within the US Department on Energy with regard to our high-power device solutions. Injecting this funding into our advanced SiC technology programs will result in an industry-leading line SiC devices,” commented GeneSiC’s President, Dr. Ranbir Singh. “The devices being developed in these projects promise to provide critical enabling technology to support a more-efficient power grid, and will open the door to new commercial and military hardware technology that has remained unrealized due to the limitations of contemporary silicon-based technologies.”

The three projects include:

  • A new Phase I SBIR award focused on high current, multi-kV Thyristor-based devices geared towards energy storage applications.
  • A Phase II SBIR follow-on award for development of multi-kV SiC power devices for high voltage power supplies for high power RF system applications awarded by the DOE Office of Science.
  • A Phase I STTR award focused on optically gated high-voltage, high-frequency SiC power devices for environments rich in electro-magnetic interference, including high power RF energy systems, and directed energy weapon systems.

Along with the awards, GeneSiC has recently relocated operations to an expanded laboratory and office building in Dulles, Virginia, significantly upgrading its equipment, infrastructure and is in the process of adding additional key personnel.

“GeneSiC capitalizes on its core competency in device and process design to develop the best possible SiC devices for its customers, backing that up with access to an extensive suite of fabrication, characterization and testing facilities,” concluded Dr. Singh. “We feel those capabilities have been effectively validated by the US DOE with these new and follow-on awards.”

Additional information about the company and its products may be obtained by calling GeneSiC at 703-996-8200 or by visiting