Design of Three Level Silicon Carbide Neutral Point Clamped Inverter

Deshpande, Aditya Anil
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Power electronics play an important role in electricity utilization from generation to end customers. Application areas like a hybrid vehicle, smart grid systems, aerospace, and AC motor drives will demand high power, high efficiency, and compact converters. Power electronics uses a switching function to implement power conversion circuits. Semiconductor devices like IGBT, MOSFET, IGCT are used for the design of converter. Silicon (Si) is a widely used semiconductor material for these switches. However, Silicon material is reaching its characteristic limitations in high power density applications. New cutting edge wide bandgap semiconductor technology like Silicon carbide (SiC) has shown their better performance characteristics compared to Silicon. With their high-temperature capability and high-frequency operation, SiC power electronics are more reliable. This thesis presents the development of a 10kVA 3-level neutral point clamped inverter using SiC MOSFETs and space vector modulation (SVM). Importance of the SVM technique in achieving low THD is explained and verified with simulation. Hardware prototype is built to verify simulation results with power hardware-in-the-loop developed using OPAL-RT real-time simulator.

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Neutral Point Clamped, Power Converter, Silicon Carbide, Space Vector Modulation, Three Level Inverter
Electrical and Computer Engineering