Turbine Converter

D. Hammell, M. Holveck, and E. Limpaecher (USA)


Inverter Technology, Energy Conversion, DistributedGeneration, Wind Energy


A key factor preventing the widespread use of wind power is cost. The use of variable speed drives in wind turbines will acquiesce considerable reductions in the cost of produced electricity via reduced turbine wear and increased energy capture. However, the expense and inefficiency of modern power electronics, especially at high voltage/power levels, is one limiting factor to their increased use in wind turbines. At high power levels today's conversion topologies are fairly inefficient, expensive and create poor quality power without substantial filtering. The authors here present a low-cost, SCR-based, circuit topology and control methodology called AC-link which operates at an efficiency of over 98% (at 480 VAC and above) and produces total voltage and current harmonic distortion on the input and output Figure 2: Typical voltage (green, lower) and current on the AC-link capacitor below 5% without any additional filtering.

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