The hope is that the new silicon carbide power semiconductor that was created will improve the fuel efficiency of hybrids by as 10%. In addition, Toyota is also aiming to reduce the size of the automotive power control units, or PCUs, by 80%, as this technology would allow the size of the coil and capacitor to be reduced. About 40% of the power control units are comprised of the coil and capacitor.
Since the launch of the Toyota Prius (http://www.lakeshoretoyota.com/
Toyota has installed the SiC power semiconductors in prototype models and says that based on the results from test courses, they’ve seen a 5% increase in fuel efficiency. The plan moving forward is that hopefully within a year Toyota will begin testing this technology in vehicles out on public roads in Japan.
The silicon carbide power semiconductor technology will be on display at the 2014 Automotive Engineering Exposition from May 21 to 23 in Yokohama at the Pacifico Yokohama convention center.
Burns Harbor-area Toyota drivers interested in learning more about the new silicon carbide power semiconductors are encouraged to visit Lake Shore Toyota (http://www.lakeshoretoyota.com/