Efficient 500kW DC Fast Charger

Default ARPA-E Project Image

Fayetteville, Arkansas
Project Term:
03/14/2018 - 03/13/2022

Technology Description:

Cree Fayetteville (operating as Wolfspeed, A Cree Company) will team with Ford Motor Company and the University of Michigan-Dearborn to build a power converter for DC fast chargers for electric vehicles using a solid-state transformer based on silicon carbide. The team will construct a single-phase 500 kW building block for a DC fast charger that is at least four times the power density of todays installed units. This device would offer significant improvements in efficiency (greater than 60% less power losses), size/weight (greater than 75% smaller size, 85% less weight), and cost (40% lower materials costs) over the state-of-the-art. Using this system, an electric vehicle (100 kWh) will deliver long driving range with 6 mins of recharge. The compact size also reduces the footprint and structural costs in high-cost real estate in areas with high-population. The teaming of an end user (Ford) directly with the disruptive technology provider (Cree Fayetteville) may accelerate the deployment of fast charge capability for electric vehicles.

Potential Impact:

If successful, CIRCUITS projects will enable further development of a new class of power converters suitable for a broad range of applications including motor drives for heavy equipment and consumer appliances, electric vehicle battery charging, high-performance computer data centers, grid applications for stability and resilience, and emerging electric propulsion systems.


More robust power electronics that withstand higher operating temperatures, have increased durability, a smaller form factor, and higher efficiency will significantly improve the reliability and security of a resilient electrical grid.


Low cost and highly efficient power electronics could lead to more affordable electric and hybrid-electric transportation, greater integration of renewable power sources, and higher efficiency electric motors for use in heavy industries and consumer applications.


Electricity is the fastest growing form of end-use energy in the United States. High performance, low cost power electronics would enable significant efficiency gains across the economy, reducing energy costs for businesses and families.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Isik Kizilyalli
Project Contact:
Dr. Daniel Martin
Press and General Inquiries Email:
Project Contact Email:


Cree, Inc.
Ford Motor Company
University of Michigan, Dearborn

Related Projects

Release Date: