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Diamond as the heat spreader for the thermal dissipation of GaN-based electronic devices

Liwen Sang
Volume 1, Issue 1 (2021)
DOI: 10.1080/26941112.2021.1980356


With the increasing power density and reduced size of the GaN-based electronic power converters, the heat dissipation in the devices becomes the key issue toward the real applications. Diamond, with the highest thermal conductivity among all the natural materials, is of the interest for integration with GaN to dissipate the generated heat from the channel of the AlGaN/GaN high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs). Current techniques involve three strategies to fabricate the GaN-on-diamond wafers: bonding of GaN with diamond, epitaxial growth of diamond on GaN, and epitaxial growth of GaN on diamond. As a result of the large lattice mismatch and thermal mismatch, the integration of GaN-on-diamond wafer is suffered from stress, bow, crack, rough interfaces, and large thermal boundary resistance. The interfaces with transition or buffer layers impede the heat flow from the device channel and greatly influence the device performance. In this review, we summarize the three different techniques to achieve the GaN-on-diamond wafers for the fabrication of AlGaN/GaN HEMTs. The problems and challenges of each method are discussed. In addition, the effective thermal boundary resistance between GaN and diamond, which characterizes the heat concentration, is analyzed with regard to different integration and measurement methods.


Semiconductor; Heat-related


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