has announced the development of the first inverter using SiC (Silicon Carbide) diodes for vehicle use. These inverters were first tried on a Nissan X-Trail FCV
. According to Nissan, inverters on electric-powered vehicles control the electricity coming from the power source, and their size has often set limitations on vehicle layout. The newly developed inverter is made from SiC diodes and is used with a new Heterojunction Diode (HJD) structure (a diode structure using both SiC diodes and silicon). Nissan claims there are quite a number of benefits from this new technology: reductions in size and weight of about 15 to 20 percent, an increase in reliability, and simplification of heat dissipation devices, a higher breakdown voltage and more capacity. Meanwhile, surface area is reduced by 70 percent and overall efficiency is up by 20 percent. This technology, although tried on a fuel-cell vehicle, is designed for all vehicles with electric motors.