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Infineon & Blixt collaborate to accelerate growth of SSCB's
Infineon Technologies and Swedish company Blixt Tech AB have entered an agreement to co-develop solid state circuit breakers (SSCB) based on Infineon's product portfolio.
The new solid state circuit breakers have the potential to disrupt the USD 38 billion market for circuit breakers by providing superior electrical safety, real time circuit level metering and full control of the power flow. The companies says that there is a strong global demand for faster, safer and smarter circuit breakers, supporting the power grid to handle the increasingly diverse mix of energy sources and peak loads. By 2050 more than half of the global energy will be generated from clean, but volatile renewable sources. Increased electrification and peak loads continue to stress outdated grid infrastructure, and heat waves and droughts add to the challenges. At the same time, we rely on more and more direct current (DC), which creates a fundamental safety issue due to the lack of fast and reliable DC protection devices. It is very evident that the electricity system must evolve to a new digital infrastructure. Solid state circuit breakers will be an important part, supporting a safer, more flexible and reliable power grid for both AC and DC and revolutionise how we produce, manage, and consume electricity. "We are creating a new value chain that will generate value by digital control of electricity, right from the energy service providers to the edge of the grid, where building owners and managers are consuming, producing and managing electricity, and to any stakeholder in between, who has an interest in monitoring and controlling electricity. The technology shift towards digital circuit breakers has already begun. And with the new, upcoming SSCB certification standard we expect to see dramatically increasing volumes." says Jens Peter Schroer, CTO at Blixt in the press release. "While we at Infineon can contribute on a component and design level and have strong sales and distribution channels world-wide, Blixt brings in extensive expertise in the field of solid-state circuit breakers and the system level aspect. By partnering with Blixt we can further accelerate the technology transition and expedite time-to-market for solid-state circuit breaker solutions. We want to jointly shape this market," says Robert Hermann, Senior Product Marketing Director for High-Voltage Conversion at Infineon. Key features of the new SSCB co-developed by Blixt and Infineon replace all the traditional moving parts with power electronics, able to control power and interrupt high currents within micro seconds, 1000 times faster compared to mechanical circuit breakers. But the advantages do not stop there. Being a digital device, a solid-state circuit breaker also includes real-time metering, remote control and programmability – functionality that mechanical circuit breakers do not possess and can only be realized by additional expensive devices. The core of the Blixt Zero smart circuit breaker is the power stage, which is build up with Infineon´s CoolMOS™ S7. This new MOSFET technology is optimized for solid-state applications and offers unprecedented low RDS(on) * A, resulting in optimum power density at minimized system cost. This is the key enabler for demanding and cost sensitive high-power applications with smart circuit breakers being one of them. Besides power components, Infineon contributes to all relevant system devices such as power supplies, microcontrollers, sensors, safety and security devices and IoT functionality. Based on this first generation, SSCB feature-set enrichment and further system cost optimization will be the next planned steps. To further strengthen the cooperation, Blixt has been appointed an official member of Infineon's high-quality partner ecosystem program. This is to honor the company's proven competence to design and deliver strong and trustworthy solutions, especially for new technologies and application fields related to solid-state circuit breakers. Blixt's strategic considerations are perfectly in line with Infineon´s holistic product-to-system (P2S) approach.