Overview of Fundamental Frequency Sensorless Algorithms for AC Motors: a Unified Perspective
This paper uses active flux concept to review fundamental frequency sensorless algorithms for both induction and permanent magnet motors in one framework. Fundamentally, sensorless torque estimation can be directly solved using voltage model (VM) estimator, or indirectly solved using current model (CM) estimator. The latter turns the torque estimation problem into a speed estimation problem. The stator flux in VM and the d-axis angle in CM are deemed as the two sets of original states for sensorless drive. Through change of states, the direct torque estimation can be realized via observer designs; whereas the speed dependency of the unknown state (e.g., active flux and emf) gives rise to a class of speed estimation methods, known as model reference adaptive system (MRAS). The idea of a general speed observer is proposed to summarize various separate speed estimation methods needed for direct torque estimation. It is suggested to adopt inherently sensorless designs such that two-way coupling between torque estimation and speed estimation is avoided. For induction motors, it turns out the unmodelled voltage in the active flux dynamics reveals current flowing in rotor bars and can be further modelled, for which the solutions to regeneration instability problem are discussed, and change of states is recommended to attain global stability. Finally discussed are the results of slow reversal test, where local weak observability of ac motors can be potentially preserved.