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A Z-source inverter based grid-interface for a variable-speed wind turbine connected to a permanent magnet synchronous generator is proposed. A control system is designed to harvest maximum wind energy under varied wind conditions with the use of the permanent magnet synchronous generator, diode-rectifier and Z-source inverter. Control systems for speed regulation of the generator and for DC- and AC- sides of the Z-source inverter are investigated using computer simulations and laboratory experiments. Simulation and experimental results verify the efficacy of the proposed approach.