Name that Ware, September 2015

The Ware for September 2015 is shown below.

This is a little something I was gifted at Burning Man this year. I wore it around my neck for a week and then brought it back to my lab in Singapore and tore it apart. Obviously, it suffered some kind of severe trauma. I’m particularly enamored with the way the silicon melted — instead of revealing crystalline facets at the former wirebond pads, a smooth, remodeled and rather amorphous surface is revealed with rivulets of silicon radiating from the craters. Now that’s hot!

16 Responses to “Name that Ware, September 2015”

  1. Albert says:

    That looks to me like a burnt high-current IGBT module. Maybe it was used in a H-bridge motor control e.g. in a variable-frequency drive. There must have been quite some current (>200A?) to burn it. What went wrong there?

  2. Travis says:

    Albert might be onto something. The marking on the bottom of the device says C20Y2-2. There is a VFD by Schneider Electric that uses C20Y as the designator (ATV61HC20Y aka, the C20Y). Here’s the datasheet:

    Unfortunately, I’m not able to find a good photo of that particular unit.

  3. Mike says:

    There’s a picture of this die at
    They list it as a quad IGBT quad Diode module, but unfortunately don’t give a part number

  4. @f4grx says:

    I see 8 IGBTs and diodes, probably in a half-bridge configuration, not 4 diodes + 4 IGBTs.

  5. Albert says:

    In the picture Mike mentioned the red arrows point only to the IGBTs and diodes of the lower module. So there this half H-bridge contains two modules with 4 IGBTs and 4 diodes each.
    But I dont think the module was connected to the mains at Burning Man? So my first guess was that it is one half of an H-bridge of an electric battery-powered vehicle (or maybe one third of the drive if a three phase motor was used).
    So maybe all the electronics worked fine except for sufficient cooling in the middle of the Black Rock Desert. Then I would expect that also some solder should have been molten.
    But here the wire bonds evaporated hinting for a current overload. Interesting to see that both the upper and lower module shows missing wires. So maybe both modules were switched on at the same time and it shorted the supply?

  6. Marty says:

    Definately a Half-bridge IGBT module. With 4 dies that big on each leg, I’d guess it’s either rated for more than a 1000 amps or over a 1000 volts. Looks like it uses an external gate driver as well? My guess at the destruction is that one of the dies got hotter than the rest, stole all the load current, and went into thermal run-away. (an IGBT is a like a FET-input darlington transistor and transistors are prone to thermal run-away when paralleled) I bet the failure was spectacular to watch!

    Other things that could kill it are regularly driving the IGBT’s into avalanche break-down. A poor gate drive circuit over-volting the gate or switching too slow could take out a single IGBT as well. If the supply inductance spiked, that could also kill things. (i.e. input caps overheated and vented) etc.

    • @f4grx says:

      huh? I thought IGBTs were easily and efficiently parallelable if they were at the same temperature, eg, on the same heatsink. Am I wrong?

      • Marty says:

        Sorry I guess my assumptions are wrong. I just went and looked at a IGBT data-sheet. It looks like they normally have a positive temperature coefficient of resistance. So in most cases will parallel safely, same as FETs.

        Interestingly, it looks like IGBTs have a negative temperature coefficient of resistance if you manage to push the IGBT into constant-current mode. (via inadequate gate voltage) So failures due to one die hogging all the current can still happen.

  7. Jimmyjo says:

    Judging by the aspect ratio, it’s a cm600 size device. Also there is no RTC circuit built in, just IGBT and diode.

  8. 0xbadf00d says:

    Unfortunately late to the party as the “what” CM600HA-24H ( I believe, but I wonder if the “why” garners additional points – in which case I am going to roll the dice with a Giant Tesla Coil gone awry…Possibly one of the Sextant Zip Line ones :)

  9. jak usunac says:

    That looks to me like a burnt high-current IGBT module.