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Chapter -3

MULTI LEVEL INVERTERS

3.1 Inverter:

An inverter is an electrical device that converts direct current (DC) to alternating


current (AC); the converted AC can be at any required voltage and frequency with the use of
appropriate transformers, switching, and control circuits.

Static inverters have no moving parts and are used in a wide range of applications,
from small switching power supplies in computers, to large electric utility high-voltage direct
current applications that transport bulk power. Inverters are commonly used to supply AC
power from DC sources such as solar panels or batteries.

The electrical inverter is a high-power electronic oscillator. It is so named because


early mechanical AC to DC converters were made to work in reverse, and thus were
"inverted", to convert DC to AC.

3.2 Multilevel inverters:

Multilevel power conversion technology is a very rapidly growing area of power


electronics with good potential for further development. The most attractive application of
this technology is in the medium-to-high-voltage range, and includes motor drives, power
distribution, and power conditioning applications.

In general multilevel inverter can be viewed as voltage synthesizers, in which the high output
voltage is synthesized from many discrete smaller voltage levels. The main advantages of this
approach are summarized as follows.

They can generate output voltages with extremely low distortion and lower ( d v /d t ).
They draw input current with very low distortion.
They can operate with a lower switching frequency.
Their efficiency is high (>98%) because of the minimum switching frequency.
They are suitable for medium to high power applications.
Multilevel waveform naturally limits the problem of large voltage transients.

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3.2.1 SINGLE PHASE FIVE LEVEL INVERTER

The single phase five level inverter topology considered here is shown in the Fig.3.

Fig. 3.1 Single phase five level inverter topology

The five level inverter topology consists of a full bridge inverter with an auxiliary circuit

consisting of a diode bridge as shown in Fig. 3.

The operating principle of the inverter is to generate five levels of voltage. ie, Vin,

Vin/2, 0, -Vin/2, -Vin. The half voltage level in the output voltage can be obtained by

switching the auxiliary circuit switch properly. The pulse width modulation scheme for the

five level inverter is as follows: Two reference signals Vref1 and Vref2 are compared with a

high frequency carrier signal, Vtri at the same time. If Vref1 exceeds the peak amplitude of

the carrier, then Vref2 will be compared with the carrier until it reaches zero. After that Vref1

will be compared with Vtri. Fig. 4 shows the PWM law and the switching signals for the

single phase five level inverter

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Fig.3.2 PWM law and switching pattern for the single phase five level inverter

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 Vinv
ON OFF OFF OFF ON +Vpv/2
OFF ON OFF OFF ON +Vpv
OFF OFF Or OFF Or ON Or ON Or 0
ON ON OFF OFF

ON OFF OFF ON OFF -Vpv/2


OFF OFF ON ON OFF -Vpv
Table I Inverter output voltage during switches S1-S5 on and off

3.2.2 SINGLE PHASE SEVEN LEVEL INVERTER

The single phase seven level inverter topology considered here is shown in the Fig. 5.

This topology was actually derived from the five level inverter discussed in section IV. It

comprises of single phase conventional H-bridge inverter, two bidirectional switches and a

capacitor voltage divider formed by C1, C2, and C3 as shown in Fig.5. This topology has got

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many advantages over other topologies like it requires only less number of power switches,

power diodes and capacitors for the same number of voltage levels.

Fig. 3.3 Single phase seven level inverter topology

The operating principle of the inverter is to generate seven levels of voltage. ie, Vin,
Vin/3, 2Vin/3, 0, -Vin/3, -2Vin/3, -Vin. The intermediate voltage levels in the output voltage
can be obtained by proper switching. The PWM for the seven level inverter requires three
reference signals Vref1, Vref2, and Vref3. These three reference signals were compared with
a carrier signal (Vcarrier). The reference signals had the same frequency and amplitude and
were in phase with an offset value that was equivalent to the amplitude of the carrier signal.
The reference signals were each compared with the carrier signal. If Vref1 had exceeded the
peak amplitude of Vcarrier, Vref2 was compared with Vcarrier until it had exceeded the peak
amplitude of Vcarrier. Then, onward, Vref3 would take charge and would be compared with
Vcarrier until it reached zero. OnceVref3 had reached zero, Vref2 would be compared until it
reached zero. Then, onward,Vref1 would be compared with Vcarrier. The switching pattern
for the seven level inverter is shown in Fig.6.

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Fig.3.4 Switching pattern for the seven level inverter
Table II shows the output voltage level Vinv of the inverter during the switches S1-S6 on and
off.
S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 VINV
ON OFF OFF ON OFF OFF Vdc
OFF OFF OFF ON ON OFF 2Vdc/3
OFF OFF OFF ON OFF ON Vdc/3
OFF OFF ON ON OFF OFF 0
OFF ON OFF OFF ON OFF -Vdc/3
OFF ON OFF OFF OFF ON -2Vdc/3
OFF ON ON OFF OFF OFF -Vdc

As previously mentioned, three different major multilevel converter structures have


been applied in industrial applications: cascaded H-bridges converter with separate dc
sources, diode clamped, and flying capacitors. Before continuing discussion in this topic, it
should be noted that the term multilevel converter is utilized to refer to a power electronic
circuit that could operate in an inverter or rectifier mode. The multilevel inverter structures
are the focus of in this chapter; however, the illustrated structures can be implemented for
rectifying operation as well

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3.3 DIFFERENT TYPES OF CURRENT CONTROL STRATEGIES
This section presents the considered control techniques, providing for each of them
both a short description of the basic features and the discussion of the main refinements
characterizing the state-of-the-art implementations.

3.3.1 Hysteresis current control technique

The basic implementation of hysteresis current controller derives the switching signals from
the comparison current errors with a fixed hysteresis band.

For the control of the output current of the inverter we will apply the hysteresis band
current control technique, which is shown in figure 3.3 [10]. With this method we create a
zone around the reference current trying to keep the inverters output current within this zone.
The advantages of hysteresis control technique are:

1. Simple application.
2. Very good dynamic behaviour.
3. Fast response.

Fig 3.5 Block diagram of hysteresis band current control technique.

The hysteresis current control defines the timing and duration of each pulse. The switching
logic for phase a is summarized as follows:

If the inverters output current reaches the zones upper limit then the upper switch is OFF
and the lower switch is ON.

If the inverters output current reaches the zones lower limit then the upper switch is ON
and the lower switch is OFF .The switching functions for phases b and c are determined
similarly.

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3.3.2 Linear Current Control

The conventional version of the linear current controller performs a sine-triangle


PWM voltage modulation of the power converter using as the modulating signal the current
error filtered by a proportional integral (PI) regulator. It is worth noting that we have here
considered the original analog implementation of the PWM technique, since it ensures to the
system the fastest possible speed of response. A sudden change in the modulating signal is
indeed instantaneously turned into a duty-cycle variation, without the unavoidable delay
equal to one-half of the modulation period, in the case of space-vector modulation (SVM), or
to a whole modulation period, in the case of sampled PWM. The application of these
modulation techniques can only reduce the systems speed of response.

3.3.3 Digital Deadbeat Control

The advantages of the digital current control can be achieved by adopting an improved
version of the well-known deadbeat control technique.

In the conventional implementation, the digital control calculates the phase voltage,
so as to make the phase current each its reference by the end of the following modulation
period. The calculations are often performed in the , frame, and the space-vector
modulation (SVM) strategy, which very well suits the digital implementation, is applied to
the switching converter.

An important advantage of this technique is that it may not require the line voltage
measurement in order to generate the current reference. Indeed, the deadbeat controls
algorithm implies an estimation of the line voltage instantaneous value, which can, therefore,
also be used for the current reference generation.

The inherent delay due to calculations is indeed a serious drawback for this technique
due high required speed of response it becomes the main limitation and many unsatisfactory
performance levels.

These delay is reduced by sampling and control variables executing the control
routines twice in modulation period the turn and turn of times of power converter switches
are therefore decided seperately in to successive control periods. According the control

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algorithm interpolates the reference value for the current modulation period from those
cslculated in preceeding ones.

3.4 CONCLUSION

This chapter describes the operation of three phase full bridge inverter with 1200
conduction mode in detail and different types of current control techniques were presented.
Among all the current control techniques presented hysteresis current control techniques is
having fast response, dynamic behaviour and easy to implement.

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