LONDON--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Technavio’s latest report on the global electric vehicle (EV) power inverter market provides an analysis of the most important trends expected to impact the market outlook from 2017-2021. Technavio defines an emerging trend as a factor that has the potential to significantly impact the market and contribute to its growth or decline.
“Advancements in technology have made EVs use two motors per vehicle, which leads to using two inverters. This results in a multiplied effect on the global EV power inverter market.”
Siddharth Jaiswal, a lead analyst from Technavio, specializing in research on automotive electronics sector, says, “Advancements in technology have made EVs use two motors per vehicle, which leads to using two inverters. This results in a multiplied effect on the global EV power inverter market.”
DC power from the battery pack is fed to the primary winding of the transformer within the inverter through a DC link capacitor. This capacitor eliminates the voltage ripples and acts as a secondary source for energy storage. The IGBT transistors before the transformer act as electronic switches, which ensures that the flow of current is continuous to the primary winding and prevents the reverse flow of charges.
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The top three emerging trends driving the global EV power inverter market according to Technavio automotive research analysts are:
- In-wheel micro inverter system
- Adoption of new materials: SiC and GaN
- Implementation of new bundle solutions: Packaging
In-wheel micro inverter system
Implementation of in-wheel micro inverter system is an upcoming trend where motors are installed next to the wheel in parallel. This is a direct drive where motors are small but offer a high torque. For instance, Protean electric developed an "inside out" motor where high torque is generated by mounting the magnets on the rotor that sits outside the stator. This allows the coil and magnets to have a large diameter, which creates a high torque.
“The inverter size is reduced to micro level by using several microinverter units, which break down the high current switching at high voltage by a conventional power inverter into smaller currents at smaller voltages,” according to Siddharth.
Adoption of new materials: SiC and GaN
Increasing demand for improved range and cost reduction of EVs will push the size reduction of power inverters and thereby increasing its overall efficiency. For instance, US Department of Energy (DoE), sets a target for EV power inverter manufacturers to reduce the overall size of the inverters by replacing bus capacitors and increase efficiency by using alternative cooling systems.
These goals can be achieved only by using advanced semiconductor technology. For instance, in 2014, Toyota Industries partnering with Denso exhibited power module (inverter+ converter+ motor) using SiC instead of Si semiconductor. It has achieved 40% size reduction and 10% increased fuel efficiency.
Implementation of new bundle solutions: Packaging
The packaging of power inverter, especially the packing of IGBT power devices and passive components, needs to be as close and tight as possible inside the housing, to reduce the size, weight, and switching losses between units. These reductions will improve the range and lower the emissions to zero or nearly to zero.
“Many technology advancements have taken place in power inverter packaging. For instance, currently, companies develop in-house integrated systems of inverter-motor, inverter-starter-generator, inverter-transmission, etc., to improve the space consumed in the EV, make a compact system, share the cooling system, and to increase EV range,” asserts Sunil.
The key vendors are as follows:
- Hitachi Automotive
- Toyota Industries
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Technavio is a leading global technology research and advisory company. The company develops over 2000 pieces of research every year, covering more than 500 technologies across 80 countries. Technavio has about 300 analysts globally who specialize in customized consulting and business research assignments across the latest leading edge technologies.
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