Active-forced-commutated bridge using hybrid devices for high efficiency voltage source converters

Li, Peng and Finney, Stephen J. and Holliday, Derrick (2017) Active-forced-commutated bridge using hybrid devices for high efficiency voltage source converters. IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics, 32 (4). pp. 2485-2489. ISSN 0885-8993 (

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In high power converters, the on-state characteristics of semiconductor devices dictate its efficiency performance even if the optimized topologies are adopted. This letter proposes an active-forced-commutated (AFC) bridge that employs the hybrid power devices of thyristor and insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) to operate as a voltage source converter (VSC) or the building blocks of complex multi-stage high-voltage high-power converters. In this scheme, the thyristors are placed in the main power path that conducts for most of the fundamental period to lower the on-state losses; while the IGBT based full-bridge chainlink (FB-CL) is used for controlled (soft) transition and forced commutation of the main thyristor bridge, operating in short period. This stepped transition voltage also leads to minimized dv/dt exerted on the interfacing transformer. To coordinate the operation of these two parts, the FB stack is designed to operate in a concave polygon stepped transition (CPST) mode for the ordered turn-on and turn-off of thyristors according to different categories of commutation events. Detailed commutation analysis for the AFC-bridge is provided in this letter; also, high level discussions and simulation results are presented to demonstrate its potential technical merits.