A cascade multilevel inverter is a power electronic device built to synthesize a desired AC voltage from several levels of DC voltages. Such inverters have been the subject of research in the last several years, where the DC levels were considered to be identical in that all of them were either batteries, solar cells, etc. Similar to previous results in the literature, the work here shows how a cascade multilevel inverter can be used to obtain a voltage boost at higher speeds for a three-phase PM drive using only a single DC voltage source. The input of a standard three-leg inverter is connected to the DC source and the output of each leg is fed through an H-bridge (which is supplied by a capacitor) to form a cascade multilevel inverter. A fundamental switching scheme is used, which achieves the fundamental in the output voltage while eliminating the fifth harmonic. A new contribution in this paper is the development of explicit conditions in terms of the power factor and modulation index for which the capacitor voltage of the H-bridges can be regulated while simultaneously maintaining the aforementioned output voltage. This is then used for a PM motor drive showing the machine can attain higher speeds due to the higher output voltage of the multilevel inverter compared to using just a three-leg inverter.
This document was originally published by IEEE in IEEE International Electric Machines & Drives Conference, 2007. Copyright restrictions may apply.
Chiasson, John; Ozpineci, Burak; Du, Zhong; and Tolbert, Leon M.. (2007). "Conditions for Capacitor Voltage Regulation in a Five-Level Cascade Multilevel Inverter: Application to Voltage-Boost in a PM Drive". IEEE International Electric Machines & Drives Conference, 2007, 731-735.