FRAZA SME from Slovenia: Pioneering Power Electronics

Horizon Europe project DEEP PPU partner from Slovenia – SME Fraza is making significant strides in the realm of power electronics and magnetics.

In the picturesque landscapes of Slovenia, a small family-run company named FRAZA is making significant strides in the realm of power electronics and magnetics. With a rich history spanning over 40 years, FRAZA has become synonymous with innovation, boasting a portfolio of 25 global patents across three main research areas: high torque high-frequency electrical motors, the NZID Driving Principle and High Q-factor magnetic components.

Proactive understanding and avoiding state-of-the-art problems

The driving force behind FRAZA’s relentless pursuit of excellence is inspired by a timeless quote from Dutch philosopher Desiderius Erasmus: “Prevention is better than cure.” Applying this wisdom to the field of power electronics and magnetics, FRAZA focuses on proactively understanding and avoiding state-of-the-art problems.

Advancements in power magnetics 

The journey began with Franc Zajc, one of the company owners, revolutionizing the industry with an electrical motor that achieved over 10 kW/kg of specific power—25 years ahead of its time according to General Motors. This groundbreaking motor’s high torque and frequency demanded an innovative driving principle and led to advancements in power magnetics. The outcome: 25 global patents covering revolutionary technologies.

FRAZA’s cutting-edge technology has propelled the company into exciting projects, including stator magnetics for the world’s fastest rotating electrical motors, planar magnetics with an exceptional coupling ratio, and contributions to the KERS system for BMW Williams F1. Notably, the company achieved the highest power density filter inductor in the Google Little Box Challenge.


FRAZA’s breakthrough journey

Despite safeguarding their research within the confines of their home, FRAZA’s global visibility took a giant leap with the publication of an article at the IEEE PCIM conference in Nürnberg, Germany. This exposure led to collaboration with the Power Electronics department of the Fraunhofer IZM Institute and participation in the Google Little Box Challenge.

The turning point came when FRAZA, in collaboration with ETH Zürich and Fraunhofer IZM Institute, competed in the GLBC, producing the highest power density inductor. This success paved the way for participation in the EU co-funded project DEEP PPU (Deep Power Processing Unit), working closely with the Polytechnic University of Madrid.

FRAZA’s role in DEEP PPU project

FRAZA’s team is responsible for designing and producing custom-made magnetic components to minimize weight, volume, and losses in thruster electronics. The collaboration involves biweekly meetings, constant communication via email, and face-to-face interactions, fostering an efficient and dynamic working relationship.

Looking forward to new challenges and achievements 

The project has expanded FRAZA’s horizons, offering a remarkable opportunity for a small company. The benefits extend beyond technical advancements, encompassing increased market recognition, publicity, and the exploration of new market possibilities. The DEEP PPU collaboration is not just a project; it’s a gateway to enhanced technologies and a testament to the impactful contributions of a small Slovenian family-run company in the global arena of power electronics and magnetics.

Fraza from Slovenia
Hannover messe 1989 FRAZA

DEEP PPU – A challenging project driven by international cooperation

Axon’ is in charge of developing the connection between the PPU and the RIT2X thruster”, explains Mohamed BENAHMED

The technology to be developed within the project DEEP PPU is targeting a mass and volume reduction up to 30%. Involved in space projects since the 1990s, the Axon’ group has gained a considerable expertise in the manufacture of connectors and interconnect solutions which comply with the needs of the traditional space market needs but also with the game-changing spirit of the NewSpace market including cost reduction and weight saving.

“Axon’ is in charge of developing the connection between the PPU and the RIT2X thruster”, explains Mohamed BENAHMED, Axon’ RF and Microwave Expert. “The challenge for us is to develop a wire harness which combine high voltage with high frequencies while withstanding temperature and radiation. We have to find the best compromise”.

A group of Axon’ experts with different specialties are heavily involved. The key challenge is to develop a harness, interconnected with a thruster and a PPU, currently under development with stringent technical constraints. Anyway, meeting technical challenges is Axon’s core business. Just keep in mind that some of our interconnect solutions are already on the surface of the Red Planet and around its orbit.

Combined expertise

In order to meet this technological challenge and save time on optimized design development, Axon’, Polytechnic University of Madrid and ADS have decided to work together to combine theoretical simulation, detailed analysis and/or physical measurements on prototypes.

Each participant contributes with its own expertise:

Launched early 2023, this joint project is producing promising initial results thanks to the active engineering contribution of the various players involved.