Unique: Infineon develops advanced hydrogen sulfide protection to extend the life of IGBT modules

[Munich, Germany, July 9, 2020]Durability determines the longevity and reliability of modules in harsh environments. Especially when exposed to hydrogen sulfide (H2S), the lifetime of Electronic components can be greatly affected. To counter this threat, Infineon Technologies AG (FSE: IFX / OTCQX: IFNNY) has developed a unique protection feature. EconoPACK™+ modules featuring the TRENCHSTOP™ IGBT4 chipset are the first in the Econo family to feature this new protection feature for inverter applications. Harsh environments with critical levels of hydrogen sulfide are particularly common in the paper, mining, wastewater, petrochemical processing, and rubber industries.

Hydrogen sulfide is the most threatening corrosive contaminant for power semiconductors.IGBT moduleTemperatures typically rise during operation to high temperatures, which, combined with applied voltage and hydrogen sulfide contamination, react to form copper sulfide (Cu2S) crystals. This conductive structure can spread in the copper-clad trenches on the ceramic substrate DCB, and in the worst case, cause a short circuit. The premature failure of the IGBT module can lead to a significant reduction in the lifespan of the inverter. Infineon’s advanced hydrogen sulfide protection prevents hydrogen sulfide from entering sensitive areas of the module. Not only is this method unique, it is also very efficient.

At the same time, all electrical, thermal and mechanical parameters of the modules are unchanged, while retaining the same properties as standard modules, which extends the life of systems operating in harsh environments. To confirm this, Infineon designed a proprietary HV-H2S test according to the ISA 71.04-2013 standard to demonstrate that the IGBT modules can operate under specific conditions. The standard divides four levels from “mild (G1)” to “severe (GX)” according to the severity of pollution impacts. Infineon’s tests cover a wide range of industrial applications and provide a quantifiable method for evaluating the reliability of IGBT modules.

Protected by Infineon’s hydrogen sulfide technology, the IGBT modules show no dendrite growth under the test conditions specified by HV-H2S, and therefore, according to the ISA 71.04 standard, at the upper limit of the “G3 (severe)” class (≤ 2000 Å / 50 ppb) conditions, the IGBT module is expected to be used for 20 years. The EconoPACK+ with this protection can easily replace standard modules without costly and time-consuming design work. In addition, with this feature, companies using inverter systems can dispense with additional protective measures, such as adding air conditioning, temperature and humidity control in the inverter installation area or even in sealed cabinets.


EconoPACK+ modules with advanced hydrogen sulfide protection are now available for bulk order, with 300A and 450A for 1200V, and 300A and 500A for 1700V. Samples of EconoPIM 2 and EconoPIM 3 are also available to order.

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