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A Medium Voltage AC Drive with Integrated Isolation Transformer and Active Front End

Navid Zargari
Rockwell Automation 135 Dundas St. Cambridge, ON, CANADA NIR-5XI

Steve Rizzo
Rockwell Automation 135 Dundas St. Cambridge, ON, CANADA NIR-SXI s Current Source Converten which form the hasis of Current Source drives. The proposed drive system includes an integrated isolation transformer and implements the newly developed 40OAl6.5kV SGCT. This is the smallest size SGCT which results in a cost effective solution for small horse power systems (4300hp at 66WV). The advantages of this arrangement include: significant reduction in the size of the snubber components, operation at a higher switching frequency, hence reducing the size of passive components, reduction of component count, hence improving reliability, cost, and size of the drive, improved Power Factor and reduced size as compared to 12 or 18 pulse drives with multiwinding transformer approach or as compared with systems with remote transformer reduction of installation cost a true phig and play (three wire in- three wire out) concept with smart diagnostics and start up wizard which reduces the commissioning . - time. The paper includes the design considerations for the CSI drive with a PWM rectifier, description ofthe 400A SGCT, design of the integral transformer and its cooling considerations. Experimental results on a 6600W OOOhp are presented and discussed.
Abstract- A Current Source Inverter (CSI)-based Medium Voltage AC drive with PWM Rectifier (Active Front End), sensorless vector control and Symmetric Gate Commutated Thyristors (SGCTs) is presented. A transformer is integrated to the drive system to provide isolation from the other loads. The design emphasizes ease of use and reliability by adopting a plug and play concept The drive requires a total of six cable connections, three for the input and three for the output motor connections only. The use of the integral transformer further reduces the start up and installation cost and reduces the size of the overall system. The proposed system meets the harmonics requirements without the need for additional filters or complicated multi winding transformers. Results for a lOOOhp 6600V drive are included. Keywords Anjustable speed drives, Drives, Field oriented control, Hannonics, Power semiconductor devices

I. NTRODUCTION A conventional Current Source Inverter (CSI)based AC drive uses symmetric GTOs on the inverter side switching at around ZOOHz, and SCRs in the frontend phase controlled bridge rectifier. In order to meet todays more stringent harmonic requirements (such as -519 or IEC551) either a multi winding isolation transformer (for example to achieve an 18 pulse configuration) or a variety of tuned filters (for example a 6 pulse drive with filters tuned at the 4h and ?b harmonics) have to be used m the line side of the drive. Both of these configurations though effective and rugged are bulky and expensive. This paper proposes implementation of aPWM Rectifier for the CSI drives (also called an Active Front End). For this approach to be viable and attractive at Medium Voltage levels, a power semiconductor is required that can operate at 300-700 Hz switching frequency. proposes to use the Symmetric . . The paper . . . . Gate Commutated Thyristor (SGCT) for this purpose. A GCT has an integrated gate driver through a low inductance path. This results in an improvement of the dvldt, dildt, and tum-off capability over the conventional GTO. The GCT operates at a higher switching frequency than the GTO with no or minimum snubber capacitance. The GCT is available in both Symmetric and Asymmetric .structures [1-4]. While the Asymmetric GCT finds application in Voltage Source Converters, the Symmetric GCT ( S E T ) is suitable for

U. DESCRIPTION OF THEAC DRIVE SYSTEM The proposed drive system is described in five sections: A. The integral isolation transformer, B. The power circuit, C. The power semiconductor switch, D. The control strategy and E. the mechanical layout.

A. The Integral Isolation Transformer

An isolation transformer is integrated to the drive system to reduce the overall size of the drive as well as lowering the installation cost (Fig. I). The input connection is done by connecting three medium voltage cables. The control power is derived from a tertiary winding within the powk transformer. The size of the integral isolation transfonner is further reduced by means of an innovative transformer design with forced air cooling method. The air flow is channeled through the transformer windings to ensure homogenous cooling. A temperature sensor monitors the transformer winding temperature. The air pressure through the transformer winding and the flow channels is also monitored for added protection. The size of a complete drive line up is 2.8meten or less.


ensured by adapting a Selective Harmonic Elimination (SHE) switching panem for the rectifier (for example if the 5" and 7" harmonics are eliminated, one can design the filter to have a resonant frequency of approximately the 6" harmonic) [C6]. The filter resonant frequency should be well below the first dominant harmonic frequency to effectively reduce the dominant and all high order harmonics to achieve the desired current THD. The attenuation factor of the filter at the dominant harmonic frequency is given by:

Fig. 1 Tbe proposed system configuration: three wire in, three wire out.


" 0




Fig 2: A CSI based AC drive with active (PWM) rectifier frontend.

B. The Power Circuit

A Current Source Inverter-based AC drive with a PWM Rectifier is shown in Fig. 2. The system has current-source characteristics at the dc terminal (dc side reactor) and voltage-source characteristics at the AC terminal (AC side capacitors). Operating the semiconductor switches in the converters interfaces the AC and dc sides. These switches must be operated so as to avoid an open circuit on the dc side or a short circuit on the AC side. This means that at any given time there are only two switches conducting, one in the top half of the bridge and one in the bottom half. The criteria are valid for both the rectifier and the inverter. Both converters are operated with a switching frequency of 300-600Hz

where Iline, is the h" harmonic component in the line current, Irec, is the h" harmonic component as produced by the rectifier and wh is the h" harmonic frequency. The size of the input capacitor has the largest impact on the input Displacement Power Factor (and consequently on the Power Factor). The drive has leading PF at low speeds. The larger the capacitor size, the higher the speed at which point the PF becomes leading (see sectionm). The size of the inductor and capacitor dictate the voltage swings as the operatifig conditions change. Particularly the re'ctifier input voltage at the start up can he calculated from:

where V,ec is the rectifier input voltage and V. is the source voltage. There is a minimum requirement for the size of the filter capacitor to limit the ripple at the rectifier terminal This can be obtained from: , i7iD "V,


I ) The rectifier
The rectifier switching pattem and frequency are fixed and depend on the power source frequency. The input filter capacitors are designed to provide a low pass filter. in conjunction with the power source impedance or an additional line reactor. The design criteria for this filter are as follows: '1 The filter resonant frequency ( w , = -

where h is the harmonic order, is the rectifier input current, THD, is the desired THD of the rectifier terminal voltage and V, is the fundamental component ofthe rectifier terminal voltage. There is a minimum 'requirement for the line/transformer reactance to prevent interaction among drives when more than one drive is installed on the same bus and to limit the capacitor inrush current.

2) The inverter
The inverter switching pattem and frequency are dependent'on the speedlload requirements. The output capacitors are designed to absorb the high frequency current harmonics and result in near sinusoidal current and voltage waveforms at the motor terminal. This is a

% E where

L is the line inductance and C is the filter

capacitance) should he placed in a frequency range where no harmonics exist so as to avoid any amplification of the system harmonics. This can be


major difference between a Voltage and Current Source inverter. In the Voltage Souce Inverter, the output voltage has a choppediPWMed shape with finite voltage steps. This is true even for topologies with low voltage VSI modules connected in series, in which case, although the step voltage is low, the shape ofthe motor voltage waveform is still chopped. The output filter is designed to avoid amplifications of output system natural resonant frequencies, which is easy to achieve since the inverter switching pattern is used to eliminate the 5, I and 11 harmonics (at full speed) and create a harmonic-free zone where the filter resonant frequency can be placed. As the motor speed reduces, the output switching pattem, the pulse number per cycle and the number of harmonics that are eliminated increase to always ensure the existence of this harmonic-free zone.
C. The Power Semiconductor Switch

The snubber capacitor also affects the wltage overshoot during the reverse recovery of the device. Knowing the snubber capacitance value, one can optimize the device using the conduction vs recovery loss curve (V,,vs E,,, where Y,,nis the voltage drop and E,, is the recovery energy). The proposed drive size is limited to 1300hp. Therefore in order to further optimize the drive size and cost, a small SGCT is developed. This is a 400A SGCT with reduced size and gate power consumption. The gate driver power consumption is less than 12W which is almost 25% of that of a comparahle GTO. The 400A SGCT uses a 38 pole face which is the smallest SGCTilGCT available. The device losses are optimized for the size of this drive based on the known switching frequency of operation and switching voltages.

The waveforms for the inverter and rectifier switches are shown in Fig. 3 where it can he seen that reverse voltage blocking capability, high switching and narrow on-pulses frequency (around 300Hz-600Hz) are required. This points to the implementation of a semiconductor switch which has the bidirectional voltage blocking capability along with the fast switching times, i.e. the SGCT. The SGCT has the added advantage that it is integrated to its gate driver resulting in a more efficient use of packaging space and iequiring significantly less time for replacement and repair. The SGCT has very high dvidt and di/dt capability and can operate with minimum snubber component. The snubber circuit is a simple RC. The capacitance value of this snubber is designed based on three aspects described below: Series connection of devices requires dynamic voltage sharing circuitry. The capacitor in this circuit dictates bow closely the devices have to be matched. The smaller the capacitor the tighter the matching criteria must be. Therefore a criterion for minimum snubber capacitor can be established. ( Cm, = AQ,,/AV where AQ,, is the maximum difference of recovery charge for matched devices and AV is the permissible tolerance io voltage variation hemeen matched devices.) The voltage overshoot during commutation depends on the inductance of the commutating circuit and the snubber capacitor. The smaller the capacitor (C,) is, the larger this voltage overshoot.







Fig. 3: Device waveforms. From the top: inverter SGCT

current, inverter SGCT voltage, rectifier SGCT current, rectifier SGCT voltage.

D.The ControlStrategV
I ) The Control Circuit The proposed drive system uses direct sensorless vector control in which the position of the stator current vector is controlled relative to the measured motor flux vector. Sensorless operation indicates that the motor speed is estimated from the measured drive variables and parameters. The stator current is resolved into flux and torque producing components by the flux and the speed control regulators respectively. The two control loops operate independently. The regulation of the dc link current is achieved by phase shifting the switching pattern of the rectifier [5,6]. A block diagram representation of the drive control system is shown in Fig. 4. 2) Diagnostics features The drive firmware implements various diagnostics features. These are categorized in two groups: preventive and protective measures. The preventive group features continuous monitoring of the inverter and rectifier heat sink temperatures, monitoring of the overall air pressure and detection of unbalance in or motor flux. These lineiload current

(C,Avz = L,12 where


7 Y is the allowable

overshoot, I is the commutating current and L is the commutating loop inductance.) In the above formulae, the energy dissipated in the snubber resistor during this energy transition is neglected.


AC Line

.:I---Fig. 4 Block diagram of the direct sensorless vector conlrol system used in the proposed AC drive

measures will prevent nuisance trips by adjusting the drive operating point or attempt to rectify the problem by displaying' the proper warning message on the interface display terminal and recommending an action. The protective diagnostic group contains the typical over currenu over voltagelover load trip and warning settings. These occur when nothing can be done by the drive to resolve the initial abnormality and keep it running. 3) Start Up Wizard The Start Up Wizard is an algorithm that auto. tunes and sets up the drive with the most suitable parameter settings for the application. This algorithm is designed based on previous experience gained in the field.

time (time to replace an SGCT is less than Smin). (see Fig. 5) 4Cooling Strategy The drive uses a densefin heatsink design with very low thermal resistance and good cooling capability. Experimental results in a wind tunnel as well as in the actual drive are used to optimize the drive cooling system and minimize the size of the fan. This is important at a lower power rating since the fan loss could have a significant impact on the overall efficiency of the drive. The status of the fan and the pressure itself is continuously monitored to improve the drive reliability.

A MV drive can be evaluated based on the following criteria: (A) Performance, (B) Reliability, (C) Ease of Use.

E. The Mechanical Layout

1) General Layout and accessibility The mechanical layout of the drive is such that it maximizes the cooling capability of the drive while reducing the overall size without sacrificing accessibility. No rear access is required. The main cooling fan is integral to the drive and is fed from MV as previously described. This speeds up and eases the start up procedure. The SGCTs are laid out horizontally on a shelf like PowercageTM which reduces the repair

A. Performance 1) Harmonics AC drives are egected to meet the harmonic guidelines on the input and output waveforms. The experimental results are obtained for a 6600V/lMJOhp drive in a system with Short Circuit MVA FCMVA) =38MVA. The line current'and voltage waveforms are shown in Fig. 6. The cwrent THD is less than 5%. The system impedance and its existing voltage harmonics can affect the drive input current at low speed and light load conditions. However, these can usually be addressed by performing harmonic analysis or adjusting filter parameters if necessary. The drive filter is designed to minimize the system impact on the drive harmonic performance. THD results as a function of the drive speed for the unit under test is shown in Fig. 7. The motor current and voltage waveforms are shown in Fig. 8. Both motor current and voltage are


sinsiisoidal waveforms. There are no dvldt issues associated with Current Source Inverter. based AC drives and no need for such considerations when designing the motors. The motor can have a standard insulation requirement similar to across the line motor applications. 2) PoNer Factor The drive input PF is designed to be near unity at full speedfull load and will remain near unity for much of the speed range. The PF for a pumplfan type load is shown in Fig. 9 where one can see that the size of the input filter capacitor greatlyaffects the input PF. The motor PF also affects the input PF as shown in Fig. 10. However, the effect of the motor PF is less significant. The motor PF in Fig. 10 is assumed to vary linearlywith motor speed. At start up, the line current is mainly reactive due to the input filter capacitor ciment, hut is quickly compensated-by the load current. 3) Effiziency The efficiency of the drive is calculated at full speedlfull load for various 6600V drive sizes and is depicted in Fig. 11. The overall system efbciency is always higher than 96% even at these low power levels. As the output power increases so does the efficiency. since a percentage of the losses are fixed and not power dependent. Figure 12 shows how the efficiency for a particular drive varies as a function of motor speed. These results are for 6600V drives, fan type loads, assuming motor PF-0.92 and varying linearly with speed as given below: PF,,,,,,, = 0.4xspeed+ 0.52 The motor current is assumed to be: I,,,,, torque = speed 2 , The efficiency numbers are dependent on the output power, motor PF and the type of load. The curves, shown here are for the complete drive (including all auxiliaries, fan, power supplies, etc). The transformer efficiency is not included m the results. The transformer can he designed to have a 98599% efficiency. ,

making these systems more user friendly since most drive users will not be power electronics specialists. The proposed system achieves this by providing a true plug and play concept through implementing: Start up Wizard, integrated transformer, SGCT diagnostics, tertiary fed fan and various firmware embedded protection features. CONCLUSION A Medium Voltage PWM-CSI based AC drive with integral transformer and PWM Rectifier front achieves a true plug and play concept (three wire in- three wire out) and combines low component count (high reliability) with user Giendliness. Using the smallest ever SGCT (400A) in a CSI drive offers minimum snubber circuitry, high switching frequency operation. improved performance characteristics, high efficiency and ease of accessibility and repair. The paper presents general design guidelines and main attributes of SGCT based CSI PWM drives.

[I]. Y. Shakweh and E.A. Lewis, Assessment of Medium Voltage PWM VSI Topologies for multtmegawatt variable speed drive application, In Conf. Rec. EPE98. 1998. [Z]. K. Satoh. M. Yamamoto. T.Nakagaws and K. Kawakami, A new high power device GCT (Gatc Commutated TumO f 0 Thyristors, In Canf. Rcc. EPE97, pp. 70-75. 1997. [3]. H. Gruening, B. Odegard A. Weber, E. Carroll and S. Elcher, High Power Har&Driven GTO Module for 4.5 kVl3kA Snubherless Operation, in Conf. Rec. PCIM96, 1996. [4]. N. Zargari, S. Rizzo, Y. Xiao, H. Iwamoto. K.Sato and J. Donlon, A new curent source c ~ n v e r t e ~ using a Symmetric Gate Cammutated Thyristor (SGCT), in IEEE Trans. Industry Applications, Junelluly 2001. [ 5 ] . N. Zargari, Y. Xiao and B. Wu, A PWM CSI-based vector controlled Medium Voltage AC drive with sinusoidal input and ,output waveforms, in Conf. Rec. IEEE-IAS97,

[6]. N. Zargari, M. Pande. 1. Wiseman, S. Rizzo, A Medium Voltage A C drive with Active Front End and improved performance, i n Conf. Rec. IEE-EPE, 2002. [7]. F. Dewinter, R. Paes, R. Vemaas. C. Giks, ., Maximizing n Conf. Rec. IEEE-PCIC, 2000. large drive availability i

B. Reliability Perhaps the best measure of reliability is by looking at the component count. A current source AC drive with Active Front End has lower component count as compared to the other popular topologies for MV drives (namely >level VSI or seriesconnected LV H bridges). SGCTs are easily connected in series and use the minimum snubber components. Reliability also depends on the realiability (FIT) data for individual component. The SGCT, the main component of the drive has a FIT rate better than that of a HV-IGBT.
C. Ease of Use As Medium Voltage drives become more reliable, more and more industries turn to using these systems [7]. This means more attention should be given to


Fig. 6; The input voltage and current waveforms ai rated load and speed (1?5flhp, 66flflV), Trace 1: 18flflV/div (THDw=2.3%), Trace 2:lflflA/div lTHD=4.3%\ Fig. 9 The input Power Factor vs motor power for a fan Load





..~ ,~. ..




Fig. 1:The line and motor current THD v s motor speed

(obtained from Experimental results on a system with XWA=38, normalized based on full load current) Fig. 10. The effect of the motor PF on the input PF


e -











motor S U r R n l In A


Fig. I Calculated efficiency for various drive sizes for 66flflV systems.

> s









l a d I" %

Fig. 12 Calculated efficiency for a 66OOV/lOOOhp drive as a function of motor load for a fan load.