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Trends in Power Electronics with focus on wide-bandgap materials technology and applications

Orio Bellezza

President, Technology, Manufacturing, Quality and Supply Chain

ABSTRACT – The evolution of power electronics has been driven by the demand for more efficient, reliable and cost-effective power conversion and control. The need for power electronics has never been greater as we face the urgent global challenge of decarbonization. Power technologies enabled the development of high-efficiency power supplies, inverters for renewable energy systems. Electric vehicles rely on power electronics to control the motor drive, battery charging and other critical functions. Power electronics also enable he development of fast charging infrastructure, which is essential for making electric vehicles more practical and convenient. There are several types of power semiconductors used in electric vehicles and power conversion applications, including insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs), metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs), based on traditional silicon technology. Today, power semiconductors technologies continue to evolve with the development of new materials, devices, and control techniques. Some of the latest developments in power electronics include wide-bandgap (WBG) semiconductors, such as silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN), which have higher switching speeds and can operate at higher temperatures than traditional silicon devices. These new materials are enabling the development of more efficient and compact power converters for a variety of applications, from electric vehicles to power grids.

SPEAKER BIOGRAPHY – Orio Bellezza is STMicroelectronics’ President, Technology, Manufacturing, Quality and Supply Chain and has held this position since May 31st, 2018. He has been responsible for Front-End Manufacturing since 2008 and his mandate was expanded in 2018 to cover ST’s technology, manufacturing operations, supply chain, and quality. Bellezza is a member of ST’s Executive Committee. Bellezza joined SGS-ATES, a predecessor company to STMicroelectronics, in 1984 as a fab process engineer. He soon moved to ST’s Central R&D organization and participated in several key projects, including the introduction of process technology modules for manufacturing sub-micron non-volatile memories. In 1996, Bellezza was appointed Director of ST’s R&D facility in Agrate and led its upgrade and expansion into a manufacturing and development center for non-volatile memory and smart-power technologies. In 2002, he became Vice President of Central R&D, and in 2005, was appointed Vice President and Assistant General Manager of Front-End Technology and Manufacturing. Bellezza also serves as Managing Director of the ST Italy legal entity. He has published multiple technical papers and earned several patents in non-volatile memories. Orio Bellezza was born in Bergamo, Italy, in 1959, and graduated cum laude with a degree in Chemistry from the University of Milan, Italy.

Energy transition: electrification, digitalization, market, resilience

Marcelo Masera

Politecnico di Torino

ABSTRACT – The energy transition is a global trend firmly under way, going on now for several years for tackling environmental and climate-related concerns. In the last years, the acceleration of the climate related policies and initiatives has put electricity system at the centre of the debate concerning the decarbonisation of society.  While it is impossible to envisage the diminution of greenhouse gases emissions without an electricity-centred economy, there are many issues to be solved regarding technologies, investments, market regulation, and social equity at the national and global scales.
The speech will highlight the role and limitations of public policies in the promotion of electrification, and the synergies with the digitalization of the assets and systems. On the other hand, it will discuss the emerging problems about markets caused by the prevalence of renewable energy sources, and the need to rethink the resilience of systems for anticipating the set of capabilities that will be required for the reliable and secure supply of energy.

SPEAKER BIOGRAPHY – Marcelo Masera is since 1st September 2022 senior researcher at the Department of Energy, Politecnico di Torino in Italy. He is in charge of guiding research on energy systems, smart grids, and resilience.
He was Head of the Unit “Energy Security, Distribution and Markets” at the Directorate “Energy, Transportation and Climate” of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission from 2011 to June 2022. The unit has premises in Petten, the Netherlands, and Ispra, Italy, and its main mission is to provide support to European policy makers and national authorities in relevant topics. The main lines of activity are electricity systems and markets, natural gas systems and markets, digitalisation of energy, and interoperability.
Since 2000 he is officer of the European Commission, working at the Joint Research Centre. Between 2000 and 2010 he was responsible for the JRC group dealing with Critical Infrastructure Protection, theory of failures in cyber-physical systems and cybersecurity related aspects. His background is in Electronics and Electricity Engineering.

Enabling the Energy Transition

Franco Pierro


ABSTRACT – Climate change is currently imposing decarbonization challenging goals with the purpose of reducing CO2 emissions both at global and local level.
To support the energy transition Italy is deploying the PNIEC and PNRR economic programs, to sustain the growth of green energy production and to enable consumptions electrification.
In this framework, the DSO role is crucial to connect to the distribution infrastructure both final customers and small energy producers. For this reason, our electrical grid will be widespread, efficient and resilient and will develop faster than ever before, where our primary substation will act as its pumping heart.
To match a fast-paced grid expansion E-Distribuzione will implement quick works’ scheduling, Project management and control tools, extensive components’ standardization and innovative contract management methodologies. The two main examples are the Licensing Engineering contract, for the land scouting and the permitting process management, and the EPC contract, for end-to-end works’ management, from the engineering to the commissioning.
These are our goals, but they are also the issues for everyone who wants to look forward.

SPEAKER BIOGRAPHY – Franco Pierro was graduated in Nuclear Engineering at Pisa University where he also obtained a PhD in Nuclear Safety.
At Pisa University he carries out, as collaborator to research, activities on thermo-hydraulics and innovative plant design and collaborates with Ansaldo Nucleare for Westinghouse new Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) design.
He joined Enel in March 2007 in the new-born department of Nuclear Technical Area and was seconded to Slovak Republic (Slovenské Elektrárne) at the Mochovce NPP initially as Design Engineer (Nuclear Safety Analyst) then Project Engineering and finally from 2012 to 2015 as Head of the Nuclear Safety Department.
In January 2016 he was called to Enel SpA Holding where he held the role of Industrial organizational development; from September 2018 to July 2021, he held the role of head of the Planning and Organization of the Global Enel Grids where he was responsible for guiding the organizational changes of the Business Line.
Since August 2021 he has held the role of Head of Project Management and Construction Italy, with the main purpose of HV substation construction throughout all the value chain from permitting, engineering, construction, testing and commissioning.

Pasquale Pistorio

Honorary Award 2022 of the IEEE Italy Section for “The rebuilder of European Semiconductor industry, able to combine profit and environmental/social sustainability”

SPEAKER BIOGRAPHY – Pasquale Pistorio graduated in 1963 in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic of Turin. He joined Motorola in Milan, Italy, in 1967, and rose through the ranks to become, by 1977, Corporate Vice President of the company, based in Phoenix, Arizona, and General Manager of the International Semiconductor Division. In July 1980, Pistorio accepted the challenge to return to Italy as President and Chief Executive Officer of the SGS Group, the only Italian microelectronics company. Pistorio turned around the state-owned company within two years, and his commitment to build it into a large scale broadline semiconductor manufacturer led to one of his most significant achievements: the successful integration of SGS with the semiconductor division of Thomson-CSF, in 1987. As President and CEO of the new company SGS-Thomson (subsequently renamed STMicroelectronics), Pistorio developed its diverse product portfolio based on high-growth applications and a worldwide network of strategic alliances. The successful business model enabled STMicroelectronics to position itself amongst the top five seminconductor manufacturers by the year 2000, and the company was listed in the New York, Paris, and Milan stock exchanges. While bringing the near bankrupt SGS from about 100 Million USD in sales in 1980 to a leading world company STMicroelectronics with 8.7 Billion USD in revenues in his last year as CEO in 2004, Pistorio also forged a strong company culture characterized by integrity, pursuit of excellence, and commitment to social and environmental responsibility.
As early as 1993, Pasquale set up a companywide Environmental Decalogue with quantitative targets and programs for emissions reductions, waste reduction, recycling, among others, and a roadmap towards Carbon Neutrality, making the company within a few years a pioneer and leader in sustainability, winning numerous accolades including the US Environmental Protection Award for two years, and the European Quality Award. In 2002, Pistorio was voted among the top 50 “Stars of Europe” by Business Week and number 1 in Time Magazine’s “Top 25 Movers and Shakers” list. As a member of the UN ICT Task Force under Kofi Annan, Pistorio founded the STFoundation in 2001, to provide IT Literacy skills to highly marginalized communities. Today, STFoundation counts nearly one million trainees globally.
During his career, Pistorio championed pioneering European programs such as JESSI (Join European Sub-micron Silicon Initiative) and MEDEA (Microelectronics for European Applications). He has been Chairman of the Advisory Council of the European Union’s Nanotechnology Platform (ENIAC), sat in the Executive Committee of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and at the European Round Table (ERT) of Industrialists.
Upon his retirement as President and CEO of STMicroelectronics in March 2005, he was nominated Honorary President of the company by the Advisory Board. The same year, he created the Pistorio Foundation, dedicated to providing educational opportunities to children in need.
Pistorio has served as Chairman of Telecom Italia in 2007 and as Vice President for Innovation and Research of Confindustria (2005 to 2009). He has been a board member of Fiat, Telecom Italia, Brembo, ATOS Origin, Chartered Semiconductor, and STATS ChipPAC. Pistorio is Cavaliere del Lavoro in Italy, Officer of the National Order of Merit of Malta, Officier de la Legion d’Honneur and Commandeur de l’Ordre National du Merite of the French Republic, recipient of the “Ouissam Alaouite” by the kingdom of Morocco, and Honorary Citizen of Singapore. He has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by Reed Electronics Group, as part of the European Electronics Industry Awards; the IEEE Ernst Weber Engineering Leadership Recognition; the ACE Lifetime Achievement Award by the EETimes; the IEEE Robert N. Noyce Medal Award; and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
Pistorio has received Honorary Degrees from the Universities of Genova, Malta, Pavia, Catania, Palermo, del Sannio Benevento, Bicocca and Bristol.