A Minimal Capacitor Modular Converter for Ultra-Dense Power Conversion
preprintposted on 26.07.2021, 05:28 by Mahima GuptaMahima Gupta
Modular multilevel power electronic converters are considered an increasingly critical family of converters for myriad high voltage high power applications. With the ever-growing emphasis on electrification of the economy, they play a crucial role in serving energy sources and loads whose electrical ratings go beyond the ratings of the conventional power electronic building blocks. In particular, modular multilevel converter (MMC) topology enjoy its dominance in such applications due to modularity, scalability, performance and fault-tolerance capability. However, the MMC topology design imposes low-frequency ac components on the module capacitors and thus is inhibited by the capacitor size. Capacitor sizing plays a significant role in the overall system’s size, cost and reliability. This paper introduces a minimal capacitor module based topology for DC to three-phase AC conversion. The unique design feature of the module includes minimal capacitor requirement due to elimination of single-phase ac power processing requirements. Together with improved power density, reduction of capacitor size permits the use of only film capacitors thus eliminating the weakest link of the overall system. Along with the step-by-step analytical derivation of the proposed approach, the paper presents detailed simulation studies, comparative analysis and experimental results from a proof-of-concept laboratory-scale prototype.