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High-Performance Transistors

RamGoss
Development of High-Performance Gallium Nitride Transistors
RamGoss
Program: 
ARPA-E Award: 
$1,203,998
Location: 
Woburn, MA
Project Term: 
02/11/2013 to 08/10/2014
Project Status: 
ALUMNI
Technical Categories: 
Critical Need: 
In today's increasingly electrified world, power conversion--the process of converting electricity between different currents, voltage levels, and frequencies--forms a vital link between the electronic devices we use every day and the sources of power required to run them. Power converters modify electrical energy to a usable current, voltage, and frequency for an electronic device. Today's power converters are large and inefficient because they are based on decades-old technologies and rely on expensive, bulky, and failure-prone components. Within the next 20 years, 80% of the electricity used in the U.S. will flow through these devices, so there is a critical need to improve their efficiency, size, and cost.
Project Innovation + Advantages: 
RamGoss is using innovative device designs and high-performance materials to develop utility-scale electronic switches that would significantly outperform today's state-of-the-art devices. Switches are the fundamental building blocks of electronic devices, controlling the electrical energy that flows around an electrical circuit. Today's best electronic switches for large power applications are bulky and inefficient, which leads to higher cost and wasted power. RamGoss is optimizing new, low-cost materials and developing a new, completely different switch designs. Combined, these innovations would increase the efficiency and reduce the overall size and cost of power converters for a variety of electronic devices and grid-scale applications, including electric vehicle (EV) chargers, large-scale wind plants, and solar power arrays.
Potential Impact: 
If successful, RamGoss' innovative transistors could make it easier and more cost effective to integrate large-scale renewable power plants and EVs into the grid, helping to facilitate their increased use.
Security: 
This project could contribute to a smarter, more reliable, more advanced, and secure electric grid.
Environment: 
More efficient power converters could help reduce U.S. electricity consumption, and in turn reduce the harmful emissions created by coal-fired power plants.
Economy: 
Efficient and affordable grid-scale power converters could help lower power bills for average consumers.
Contacts
ARPA-E Program Director: 
Dr. John Lemmon
Project Contact: 
Dr. Bunmi Adekore
Release Date: 
11/28/2012