Power Electronics Packaging

NREL researchers strive to improve the performance, reliability, durability, and power density of power electronics packaging technologies.

Power electronics packaging determines the electrical, thermal, and mechanical performance that can be extracted from a semiconductor switching device.

Performance, Reliability, and Durability

A photo of a piece of power electronics laboratory equipment.
NREL power electronics packaging reliability research investigates the performance and reliability of emerging interconnection, interface, and packaging materials. Findings help improve reliability and durability of emerging technologies. Photo by Dennis Schroeder, NREL

NREL researchers characterize the reliability of emerging power electronics packaging technologies to improve the reliability and durability of emerging technologies.

The wide-bandgap (WBG) semiconductor devices evaluated at NREL offer improved performance, reliability, and cost. However, high-temperature bonded interface materials are essential to enable compact, lightweight, low-cost, reliable power electronics packaging that fully utilizes the capabilities of WBG devices.

NREL researchers rely on cutting-edge modeling capabilities to develop predictive and remaining lifetime models to evaluate and improve the reliability of new high-temperature technologies. Researchers leverage accelerated testing and characterization to identify reliable power electronics packaging that fully utilizes the capabilities of WBG devices.

Higher Power Density

A picture containing engineering drawing
NREL power electronics advanced packaging development involves models and prototyping of novel thermal management, electrical interconnection, and mechanical interfaces into highly power-dense designs.

NREL researchers design and prototype power electronics packaging technologies to meet future power density performance metrics.

Decreasing the thermal resistance pathway in power electronics packages is a primary objective for increasing power density and maximizing the performance of WBG devices. This can be accomplished by either replacing package layers with new materials that enable greater thermal, electrical, and reliability performance or eliminating layers and components through new packaging designs.

NREL researchers are developing novel thermal management systems that enable higher power densities, improved reliability, and lower cost of manufacturing. Researchers leverage advanced modeling capabilities to optimize designs and rapid prototyping equipment to experimentally verify package performance to fully utilize the capabilities of WBG devices.


See power electronics and electric machines publications.