China-based Xingdong-Semi signs MoU with ST to secure SiC supply

Peng Chen, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Xingdong-Semi signs MoU with ST for SiC chips. Credit: Xingdong-Semi

As EVs continue to drive semiconductor demand, China-based Xindong Semiconductor Technology announced on March 13 that it had signed an MoU with STMicroelectronics. The agreement is expected to bring Xindong-Semi stable Silicon Carbide (SiC) supply and help the company grow its business.

According to Xindong-Semi, an affiliate of the Great Wall Motor (GWM) in China, consumers are asking for EVs with longer driving ranges and faster charging speeds as adoption grows. Therefore, more and more EVs are shifting from 400-volt to 800-volt platforms. With their high voltage endurance and junction temperature, SiC devices have been widely used in traction inverters, Onboard Chargers (OBC), and other critical components.

Xindong-Semi said it forms long-term partnerships with quality suppliers like ST to secure SiC supply and ensure its SiC power module development. The pair finished signing the MoU in Shenzhen last week with ST's CEO Jean-Marc Chery present.

Incorporated in October 2022, Xindong-Semi focuses on chip design and manufacturing. It is owned by GWM and operates a plant in Wuxi. China-based China Daily reported that Xindong-Semi installed the first IGBT power module it developed in a vehicle in November 2023.

After commencing the first production line at its Wuxi factory in October last year, Xindong-Semi will gradually begin mass-producing the IGBT modules and developing modules for 800-volt solutions.

China will remain a critical market for Western semiconductor companies, even though the US has tried to hinder the country's ramp-up. More investments from Chinese chip or semiconductor material firms have been announced.

At a technology conference on March 12, Chery said the vast semiconductor investment from Chinese companies poses a risk and an opportunity for ST, Reuters reported.

According to the CEO, China accounts for 15% of ST's revenue. He also said the company's investment in local production will benefit its growth in China.

ST said in June 2023 that it will establish a joint venture with China-based Sanan Optoelectronics to produce SiC chips. In December 2023, ST secured a long-term SiC supply agreement with Li Auto, one of China's emerging EV makers. ST will offer SiC MOSFET devices to enable the carmaker's high-voltage battery EVs.