As the greatest disruption to the power-electronics roadmap since the invention of silicon MOSFETs, GaN transistors are reinventing the way electrical converters are designed for improved efficiency, and better energy usage.
Exagan was co-founded by Frédéric Dupont and Fabrice Letertre to accelerate mass-market adoption of gallium-nitride (GaN)-based power devices. Armed with a decade of R&D experience from working with GaN technology at Soitec, a global leader in advanced materials, and convinced that this material would be a key in enabling superior power-conversion efficiency, they drew upon existing GaN technology to develop Exagan’s intelligent power solutions.
Exagan was launched as a spin-off company in April 2014 backed by two original investors Soitec and CEA-Leti, as well as four investment funds – Innovacom, CM-CIC, IRDInov and iXO Private Equity. On March 5, 2020, STMicroelectronics, a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, announced it had signed an agreement to acquire a majority stake in French Gallium Nitride (GaN) innovator Exagan.
The world’s energy is not infinite. The ever-increasing use of electronic devices is accelerating energy consumption across all domains including communications, transportation and the energy industry itself. Clearly, the ways that raw materials and energy are used must be reinvented to provide long-term sustainability for the planet.
Throughout the realm of electronics, this can be achieved by moving beyond silicon to more advanced GaN technology. In addition to being more compact, GaN-based electrical converters are more energy efficient. Benefits include reduced CO2 emissions and limiting the need for additional carbon-fuel power plants in developing countries.
Power integration requires low electrical losses and high-frequency operation, which are limited in today’s silicon power devices. GaN technology has opened the door to the next generation of devices with increased integration and efficiency.
Exagan believes that superior GaN device performance and product leadership will be achieved by controlling all critical parameters of its products: material, design, process, packaging and final test as well as mastering the entire GaN production flow.
The company’s team of semiconductor experts created the unique G-Stack™ technology to produce GaN-on-silicon material using an industry-leading, scalable and cost-effective 200-mm platform, leveraging Soitec’s material IP and CEA-Leti’s extensive device expertise and development infrastructure.
With GaN, we are reinventing power conversion for many applications and achieving unprecedented performance in terms of integration and energy consumption. Exagan’s power electronics experts apply their creativity and continuous innovation to develop the most comprehensive G-FET™ and G-DRIVE™ products, facilitating GaN implementation in many applications to maximize system performance and reduce costs.
Working closely with customers, Exagan uses its applications expertise to facilitate GaN implementation and create more energy-efficient products for greener power in smart homes, faster charging mobile devices, increased energy efficiency of data centers, smart factory automation and greater autonomy of electric vehicles.
By designing the technology and the products, Exagan provides optimum and fully qualified GaN solutions for customers’ most demanding applications.
Building on its powerful legacy technology, Exagan developed a unique “fab lite” business model leveraging industrial partnerships for large-scale production of GaN devices at 200-mm silicon foundries to satisfy customers’ needs for a robust supply of semiconductors.
With its qualified manufacturing chain and established industrial partnerships for wafer processing, testing and packaging, Exagan can deliver reliable products in high volume and achieve the highest manufacturing standards for GaN technology with full product traceability.
Exagan is a member of a renowned French and European power-conversion ecosystem, with innovative clusters for technology, products and application development. Leveraging its strong R&D partnership with CEA-Leti, the company is part of a community within the Minatec campus and the associated miniaturization-technology clusters at Minalogic. In addition, Exagan’s Toulouse facility places it at the center of the automotive and aerospace clusters there.
With the agility and flexibility of a small company, a robust network of partners, an innovative technology and a unique business model, Exagan is ideally positioned to revolutionize the power electronics market.