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Industrial Electronics, IEEE Transactions on

Issue 6 • Date June 2010

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  • Table of contents

    Page(s): C1 - 1849
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  • IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics publication information

    Page(s): C2
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  • Guest Editorial

    Page(s): 1850 - 1852
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  • A Multiphysic Dynamic 1-D Model of a Proton-Exchange-Membrane Fuel-Cell Stack for Real-Time Simulation

    Page(s): 1853 - 1864
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (863 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents cell-layer-scale multidomain dynamic 1-D proton-exchange-membrane fuel-cell (PEMFC) stack model using VHDL-AMS modeling language. The model covers three main fuel-cell energy domains: electrical, fluidic, and thermal. The performance and advantages of the VHDL-AMS language are shown in the first part. Then, by means of the ??top-down?? modeling approach, the electrical-, fluidic-, and thermal-domain models of the PEMFC stack are addressed in three separate parts. Simulation results are then compared with a Ballard 1.2-kW NEXA fuel-cell system and show a great agreement with experimental data. This complex multidomain VHDL-AMS stack model, containing more than 25 000 state variables and only few empirical coefficients (four parameters identified on the polarization curve), can be used for fuel-cell system components design and also for real-time applications. Real-time simulation is a key issue in many applications such as system control and hardware-in-the-loop applications. Moreover, this fuel-cell stack model is suitable and can be parameterized for all kinds of PEMFC including water-cooled and metal bipolar plates stacks: Only the cooling fluid and materials properties have to be changed. View full abstract»

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  • A Dynamic Circuit Model of a Small Direct Methanol Fuel Cell for Portable Electronic Devices

    Page(s): 1865 - 1873
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (491 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) constitute nowadays a promising alternative to lithium ion batteries for powering portable devices. The effective design of power-management units for interfacing DMFCs requires accurate models able to account for variable-load conditions and fuel consumption. A dynamic nonlinear circuit model for passive methanol fuel cells is presented in this paper. The model takes into account mass transport, current generation, electronic and protonic conduction, methanol adsorption, and electrochemical kinetics. Adsorption and oxidation rates, which mostly affect the cell dynamics, are modeled by a detailed two-step reaction mechanism. The fully coupled multiphysics equivalent circuit is solved by assembling first-order differential equations into a nonlinear state-variable system in order to simulate the electrical evolution of the fuel cell from its initial conditions. The fuel-cell discharge and methanol consumption are computed by combining mass-transport and conservation equations. As a result, the runtime of a DMFC can be predicted from the current load and the initial methanol concentration. View full abstract»

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  • A Large-Signal and Dynamic Circuit Model of a \hbox {H}_{2}/\hbox {O}_{2} PEM Fuel Cell: Description, Parameter Identification, and Exploitation

    Page(s): 1874 - 1881
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1053 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    The authors propose a large-signal and dynamic circuit model for a proton exchange membrane fuel cell, which includes the following different main physical and chemical phenomena: activation, electrochemical double layer, gas diffusion through the gas diffusion and active layers, and ohmic losses. Be careful: this is not an impedance model. This model will be used in studying the interactions between fuel cells and power converters which are connected and, particularly, the fuel-cell behavior facing the perturbations created by the buck converter and the single-phase inverter. View full abstract»

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  • From Modeling to Control of a PEM Fuel Cell Using Energetic Macroscopic Representation

    Page(s): 1882 - 1891
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1428 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents a methodology to design the control part of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (FC) stack. The objective is to control the FC voltage. This methodology is based on an energetic macroscopic representation (EMR) of the FC and leads to a so-called maximal control structure (MCS). The MCS is a step-by-step inversion of the EMR (inversion-model-based control structure). The control design process is based on an explicit definition of the problem. Basically, for instance, the tuning inputs, the system objectives, or constraints are highlighted to organize the control. Moreover, the MCS shows the places where sensors are required and controllers are requested. Unfortunately, the MCS is only a theoretical control structure. Consequently, a realistic structure needs some simplifications, leading to a so-called practical control structure. The FC model is first presented and experimentally validated. The designed control structure is then simulated, and the results are discussed. View full abstract»

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  • Real-Time Implementation of a Constrained MPC for Efficient Airflow Control in a PEM Fuel Cell

    Page(s): 1892 - 1905
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1823 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Fuel cells represent an area of great industrial interest due to the possibility to generate clean energy for stationary and automotive applications. It is clear that the proper performance of these devices is closely related to the kind of control that is used; therefore, a study of improved control alternatives is fully justified. The air-supply control is widely used to guarantee safety and to achieve a high performance. This paper deals with this control loop, proposing and comparing two control objectives aimed at satisfying the oxygen starvation avoidance criterion and the maximum efficiency criterion, respectively. The control architecture is based on a constrained explicit model predictive control (MPC) law suitable for real-time implementation due to its low computational demands. The proposed controller is implemented and evaluated on a 1.2-kW polymer electrolyte membrane or proton exchange membrane fuel-cell test bench, thus obtaining real data which show that the maximum efficiency criterion does not conflict with the starvation avoidance criterion and allows system performance improvements of up to 3.46%. Moreover, experimental results utilizing the explicit MPC approach also show improved transient responses compared to those of the manufacturer's control law. View full abstract»

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  • Experimental Validation of a PEM Fuel-Cell Reduced-Order Model and a Moto-Compressor Higher Order Sliding-Mode Control

    Page(s): 1906 - 1913
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    Fuel cells are electrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy of a gaseous fuel directly into electricity. They are widely regarded as potential future stationary and mobile power sources. The response of a fuel-cell system depends on the air and hydrogen feed, flow and pressure regulation, and heat and water management. In this paper, the study is concentrated on the air subsystem that feeds the fuel-cell cathode with oxygen. Proceeding from a fourth-order model representing the air subsystem of a proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell, a reduced third-order model is presented. Simulations show that the relative error caused by this reduction does not exceed 5%. Experimental validation has been done on a 33-kW PEM fuel cell, for both fourth- and reduced third-order models with less than 5% relative error. Additionally, a higher order sliding-mode supertwisting algorithm, with a well-known heuristic modification using variable gains, has been designed and validated experimentally to control a permanent-magnet synchronous motor that drives a volumetric compressor (double screw) designed to feed the 33-kW fuel cell with air. View full abstract»

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  • A PEM Fuel-Cell Model Featuring Oxygen-Excess-Ratio Estimation and Power-Electronics Interaction

    Page(s): 1914 - 1924
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (706 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    In this paper, a polymer-electrolyte-membrane fuel-cell (FC) model that is useful for simulation and control purposes is presented. The model uses both electrical-circuit components and functional blocks to reproduce both static and dynamic FC behaviors. Its main feature is in the reproduction of the oxygen-excess-ratio behavior, but it is also able to interact with any electrical device connected at the FC terminals, e.g., a load or a switching converter. Consequently, the proposed model can be used to develop new control strategies aimed at avoiding the oxygen-starvation effect and/or minimizing the fuel consumption. The model has been customized for a Ballard Nexa 1.2-kW power system, and this has allowed an experimental validation by means of measurements performed on a real FC device. View full abstract»

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  • An Embedded Frequency Response Analyzer for Fuel Cell Monitoring and Characterization

    Page(s): 1925 - 1934
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (368 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents an embedded frequency response analyzer for fuel cells (FCs) based on a robust measurement technique with simple implementation. A frequency response analysis technique provides valuable information of different electrochemical processes that occur inside the FC. The measurement system is implemented on a low-cost digital signal processor to perform frequency response and impedance tracking. The small-size and low-power consumption allows this special device to be embedded into the FC controller or power conditioning stage. The system is capable of measuring automatically the frequency response of the FC at different operating points, even when the FC is operating with a load. These measurements can be used to characterize the FC at the design stage and to perform online monitoring of the FC state during a continuous operation. The proposed instrument uses the lock-in amplification technique, which allows very accurate and precise measurements even in the presence of high noise levels. The proposed hardware and signal processing technique are described in this paper, including the experimental result of a 1.2-kW proton exchange membrane FC system. View full abstract»

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  • Design of the Dynamic Power Compensation for PEMFC Distributed Power System

    Page(s): 1935 - 1944
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1563 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Transient load power may bring damage to the proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) and shorten the lifetime of the stack. This paper introduces a dynamic power compensation unit consisting of a bidirectional dc/dc converter and a supercapacitor pack, used for compensating the slow dynamic response of the PEMFC and guaranteeing the operation safety of the fuel cell (FC) during load transitions. In this paper, the characteristics of PEMFC are first studied by an experiment, and then, the target of the dynamic power compensation is set based on the experimental results. Subsequently, an analysis on the dynamic power compensation and derivation of the design target is presented. The controller and the filter design based on these analyses are given. With regard to the hardware realization, the bidirectional dc/dc converter is then introduced. Finally, the experimental results on a 5-kW FC power system with dynamic power compensation are given to verify the theoretical analysis and the design. With the dynamic power compensation unit, the FC only needs to supply a slowly changing output power during the sharp load transition process. A more reliable operation condition can be achieved for the FC. View full abstract»

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  • Electrical Characteristic Study of a Hybrid PEMFC and Ultracapacitor System

    Page(s): 1945 - 1953
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1454 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents the characteristic study of a clean hybrid power supply system combining proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) as the main power source and ultracapacitor (UC) as the energy storage unit. Unlike the conventional fuel-cell hybrid system with power conditioning unit, the study investigated the electrical characteristic of the PEMFC and UC hybrid system without dc/dc converter. As a platform to evaluate the proposed system, the fuel-cell-based electric bicycle is implemented. The platform consists of PEMFC stack, metal hydride, thermal balance system, UC, dc motor, system control and data logging unit, as well as user interface. The test results showed that the proposed architecture is functional and leads to good results. By road testing, it was verified that the PEMFC can provide the rated power to the load and that the UC can deliver the power at system startup and the peak power if needed. The road testing results showed that the design objectives are fulfilled. View full abstract»

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  • Predictive Control of Voltage and Current in a Fuel Cell–Ultracapacitor Hybrid

    Page(s): 1954 - 1963
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1330 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents a system integration and control strategy for managing power transients on a Nexa polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (FC) with the assistance of an ultracapacitor (UC) module. The two degrees of freedom provided by the use of two dc/dc converters enable the independent low-level control of dc bus voltage and the current split between the FC and UC. The supervisory-level control objectives are to respond to rapid variations in load while minimizing damaging fluctuations in FC current and maintaining the UC charge (or voltage) within allowable bounds. The use of a model predictive control approach which optimally balances the distribution of power between the FC and UC while satisfying the constraints is shown to be an effective method for meeting the supervisory-level objectives. The results are confirmed in experiments. View full abstract»

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  • A Methodology for Sizing Backup Fuel-Cell/Battery Hybrid Power Systems

    Page(s): 1964 - 1975
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (877 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Hybridization of fuel cells and batteries combines the advantages of both power sources. This paper proposes the use of fuel-cell/battery hybrid power systems as backup power systems and develops a methodology for sizing both fuel cell and battery bank, according to a minimum lifecycle cost criterion, from any defined hourly load profile and any defined backup time. For this purpose, an existing power-system-sizing computer tool has been used, but its initial capabilities have been extended. The developed methodology allows decisions to be taken before any investment is made. As a practical application, the methodology is used for the sizing of a backup power system for a telecommunication system. View full abstract»

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  • Three-Level Bidirectional Converter for Fuel-Cell/Battery Hybrid Power System

    Page(s): 1976 - 1986
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    A novel three-level (3L) bidirectional converter (BDC) is proposed in this paper. Compared with the traditional BDC, the inductor of the 3L BDC can be reduced significantly so that the dynamic response is greatly improved. Hence, the proposed converter is very suitable for fuel-cell/battery hybrid power systems. In addition, the voltage stress on the switch of the proposed converter is only half of the voltage on the high-voltage side, so it is also suitable for high-voltage applications. The operation principle and the implementation of the control circuit are presented in detail. This paper also proposes a novel bidirectional soft-start control strategy for the BDC. A 1-kW prototype converter is built to verify the theoretical analysis. View full abstract»

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  • Highly Efficient High Step-Up Converter for Fuel-Cell Power Processing Based on Three-State Commutation Cell

    Page(s): 1987 - 1997
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (783 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    The interest toward the application of fuel cells is increasing in the last years mainly due to the possibility of highly efficient decentralized clean energy generation. The output voltage of fuel-cell stacks is generally below 50 V. Consequently, low-power applications with high output voltage require a high gain for proper operation. Several solutions were so far proposed in the literature, ranging from the use of high-frequency transformers to capacitive multipliers. This paper proposes the modification of a boost converter operating with a three-state commutation cell that is already well suited for high current stress in the input due to the current sharing between the active switches. Here, an additional winding is added to the autotransformer to provide not only the required high gain but also to significantly reduce the voltage stress across the active switches. Moreover, by employing the three-state switching cell, the size of the inductor is reduced because the operating frequency is double of the switching frequency. A prototype for the verification of the circuit was built for a 30-45-V input-voltage range, 400-V output voltage, and 250-W output power. The operation is evaluated, and the experimental waveforms and efficiency curves are presented. View full abstract»

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  • A High-Efficiency High Step-Up Converter With Low Switch Voltage Stress for Fuel-Cell System Applications

    Page(s): 1998 - 2006
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1592 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    In this paper, a novel high step-up converter is proposed for fuel-cell system applications. As an illustration, a two-phase version configuration is given for demonstration. First, an interleaved structure is adapted for reducing input and output ripples. Then, a C??uk-type converter is integrated to the first phase to achieve a much higher voltage conversion ratio and avoid operating at extreme duty ratio. In addition, additional capacitors are added as voltage dividers for the two phases for reducing the voltage stress of active switches and diodes, which enables one to adopt lower voltage rating devices to further reduce both switching and conduction losses. Furthermore, the corresponding model is also derived, and analysis of the steady-state characteristic is made to show the merits of the proposed converter. Finally, a 200-W rating prototype system is also constructed to verify the effectiveness of the proposed converter. It is seen that an efficiency of 93.3% can be achieved when the output power is 150-W and the output voltage is 200-V with 0.56 duty ratio. View full abstract»

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  • Novel High Step-Up DC–DC Converter for Fuel Cell Energy Conversion System

    Page(s): 2007 - 2017
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1226 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    A novel high step-up dc-dc converter for fuel cell energy conversion is presented in this paper. The proposed converter utilizes a multiwinding coupled inductor and a voltage doubler to achieve high step-up voltage gain. The voltage on the active switch is clamped, and the energy stored in the leakage inductor is recycled. Therefore, the voltage stress on the active switch is reduced, and the conversion efficiency is improved. Finally, a 750-W laboratory prototype converter supplied by a proton exchange membrane fuel cell power source and an output voltage of 400 V is implemented. The experimental results verify the performances, including high voltage gain, high conversion efficiency, and the effective suppression of the voltage stress on power devices. The proposed high step-up converter can feasibly be used for low-input-voltage fuel cell power conversion applications. View full abstract»

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  • A Novel Current-Fed Boost Converter With Ripple Reduction for High-Voltage Conversion Applications

    Page(s): 2018 - 2023
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    Employing a new rectifier circuit, i.e., a novel current-fed boost converter with ripple reduction, is proposed in this paper. It features high conversion ratio with smaller transformer turn ratio, recovery of transformer secondary leakage energy, low voltage stress on the rectifier diodes, and lower input- and output-current ripples with minimum component count. Therefore, high efficiency and power density can be achieved under high-frequency operation. Moreover, the new rectifier circuit can be applied to all current-fed power topologies for high-voltage conversion applications, such as fuel-cell-powered systems. The operating principle, theoretical analysis, and design considerations are presented. To demonstrate its feasibility, a 150-kHz, 16-22-V-input, and 200-V/400-W-output converter is implemented and tested. View full abstract»

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  • Converter Systems for Fuel Cells in the Medium Power Range—A Comparative Study

    Page(s): 2024 - 2032
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    Inverter systems that feed electrical power from fuel cells into the grid must convert the direct current of the fuel cell into the alternating current of the grid. In addition, these inverters have to adapt the different voltages of the fuel-cell system and the grid to each other. In this paper, different topologies of appropriate inverter systems in the medium power range of 20 kW and higher are presented briefly. The inverter operating behavior, power rating, and efficiency are compared. The power rating and efficiency are compared using an analytical calculation of the semiconductor losses. The study includes transformerless inverters as well as two-stage inverter systems with high-frequency transformers (dc/dc converter combined with an inverter). This paper compares converter systems using insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs), e.g., a boost converter in series with a voltage-source inverter (VSI), current-source inverter, and z-source inverter or converter systems using superjunction MOSFETs, such as voltage- and current-fed full-bridge converters or a boost converter with an autotransformer. The MOSFET-based dc/dc converters must be connected in series to a VSI with IGBTs to feed into the three-phase grid. The presented converters were tested in the laboratory. Some characteristics of their laboratory performance are shown. View full abstract»

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  • A New Feedback Method for PR Current Control of LCL-Filter-Based Grid-Connected Inverter

    Page(s): 2033 - 2041
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    For a grid-connected converter with an LCL filter, the harmonic compensators of a proportional-resonant (PR) controller are usually limited to several low-order current harmonics due to system instability when the compensated frequency is out of the bandwidth of the system control loop. In this paper, a new current feedback method for PR current control is proposed. The weighted average value of the currents flowing through the two inductors of the LCL filter is used as the feedback to the current PR regulator. Consequently, the control system with the LCL filter is degraded from a third-order function to a first-order one. A large proportional control-loop gain can be chosen to obtain a wide control-loop bandwidth, and the system can be optimized easily for minimum current harmonic distortions, as well as system stability. The inverter system with the proposed controller is investigated and compared with those using traditional control methods. Experimental results on a 5-kW fuel-cell inverter are provided, and the new current control strategy has been verified. View full abstract»

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  • Low-Frequency Current Oscillations and Maximum Power Point Tracking in Grid-Connected Fuel-Cell-Based Systems

    Page(s): 2042 - 2053
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (2155 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    The study of a double-stage single-phase inverter for fuel-cell-based applications is proposed in this paper. A novel control strategy aimed at reducing the low-frequency oscillations of the fuel-cell (FC) current in order to guarantee the FC safety operating conditions is proposed. The reduction of such oscillations increases the FC lifetime and avoids high mechanical stress of the membrane and unnecessary consumption of reactants. Furthermore, it allows one to design a strategy for extracting the maximum power from the FC stack with a total control of the concentration losses. Simulation and experimental results confirm the effectiveness of the proposed approach. View full abstract»

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  • New Control Method Including State Observer of Voltage Unbalance for Grid Voltage-Source Converters

    Page(s): 2054 - 2065
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    New observer-based disturbance-estimation and control algorithms are introduced in this paper that compensate source voltage unbalances. The algorithms are also designed to compensate the detrimental impact of delay effects caused by the digital-signal processing. Consequently, these techniques are appropriate for higher power systems with reduced pulsewidth modulation switching frequency and limited current-controller bandwidth. Analytical, simulation, and experimental results are presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the new observer-based control techniques. View full abstract»

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  • Multilevel Multiphase Feedforward Space-Vector Modulation Technique

    Page(s): 2066 - 2075
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1264 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Multiphase converters have been applied to an increasing number of industrial applications in recent years. On the other hand, multilevel converters have become a mature technology mainly in medium- and high-power applications. One of the problems of multilevel converters is the dc voltage unbalance of the dc bus. Depending on the loading conditions and the number of levels of the converter, oscillations appear in the dc voltages of the dc link. This paper presents a feedforward modulation technique for multilevel multiphase converters that reduces the distortion under balanced or unbalanced dc conditions. The proposed modulation method can be applied to any multilevel-converter topology with any number of levels and phases. Experimental results are shown in order to validate the proposed feedforward modulation technique. View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics encompasses the applications of electronics, controls and communications, instrumentation and computational intelligence for the enhancement of industrial and manufacturing systems and processes.

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Carlo Cecati
DISIM - Univ. degli Studi dell'Aquila
67100 Aquila, Italy
c.cecati@ieee.org
Phone: +39 0862 434 450
Fax: +39 0862 1960 411