Ageing and failure modes of IGBT modules in high-temperature power cycling

Vanessa Smet, Francois Forest, Jean Jacques Huselstein, Frédéric Richardeau, Zoubir Khatir, Stéphane Lefebvre, Mounira Berkani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

349 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents an experimental study on the ageing of insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) power modules. The aim is to identify the effects of power cycling on these devices with high baseplate temperatures (60 °C to 90 °C and wide temperature swings (60 °C to 100 °C). These values for thermal stresses have been defined according to automotive applications. The test conditions are provided by two types of test benches that will be described in this paper. The changes in electrical and thermal indicators are observed regularly by a monitoring system. At the end of the test (reaching damage criterion or failure), different analyses are performed (acoustic scanning and SEM imaging), and the damage is listed systematically. Nineteen samples of 600-V 200-A IGBT modules were thus aged using five different power-cycling protocols. The final summary of results shows that ageing mechanisms mainly concern wire bonds and emitter metallization, with gradual impact depending on protocol severity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5711661
Pages (from-to)4931-4941
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Power electronics
  • reliability testing
  • semiconductor devices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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