Power Electronics Thermal Management

Research output: NRELPresentation


This project develops thermal management strategies to enable efficient and high-temperature wide-bandgap (WBG)-based power electronic systems (e.g., emerging inverter and DC-DC converter designs). The use of WBG-based devices in automotive power electronics will improve efficiency and increase driving range in electric-drive vehicles; however, the implementation of this technology is limited, in part, due to thermal issues. This project will develop system-level thermal models to determine the thermal limitations of current automotive power modules under elevated device temperature conditions. Additionally, novel cooling concepts and material selection will be evaluated to enable high-temperature silicon and WBG devices in power electronics components. WBG devices (silicon carbide [SiC], gallium nitride [GaN]) promise to increase efficiency, but will be driven as hard as possible. This creates challenges for thermal management and reliability. This project is a Vehicle Technologies Office, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy funded project.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages22
StatePublished - 2019

Publication series

NamePresented at the 2019 Vehicle Technologies Office Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting, 10-13 June 2019, Arlington, Virginia

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PR-5400-73547


  • power electronics
  • thermal management
  • vehicles
  • wide-bandgap device


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