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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 56, NO.

6, JUNE 2009

2121

Dead-Time Elimination of PWM-Controlled
Inverter/Converter Without Separate Power Sources
for Current Polarity Detection Circuit
Yong-Kai Lin, Student Member, IEEE, and Yen-Shin Lai, Senior Member, IEEE

TABLE I
COMPARISON OF DIFFERENT METHODS

Abstract—This paper will present a dead-time elimination
scheme for a pulsewidth-modulation (PWM)-controlled inverter/
converter. The presented dead-time elimination scheme does not
require separated power supplies for freewheeling-current detection of high- and low-side power devices. The presented scheme includes the freewheeling-current polarity detection circuit and the
PWM control generator without dead time. It will be shown that
the presented scheme eliminates the dead time of PWM control
for inverter/converter and therefore dramatically improves output
voltage loss and current distortion. Experimental results derived
from a field-programmable-gate-array-based PWM-controlled inverter are shown to demonstrate the effectiveness.
Index Terms—Dead-time elimination, pulsewidth modulation
(PWM).

I. I NTRODUCTION

D

EAD time is used for pulsewidth-modulation (PWM)controlled inverter/converter control to avoid “short
through” of high-side and low-side power devices. The dead
time mainly depends upon characteristics of power devices
and gate drive circuit. The effects of dead time include output
voltage loss and current distortion [1]. These effects become
relevant as voltage is low and switching frequency is high.
Moreover, addition of dead time to a PWM-controlled inverter
also affects the common-mode voltage [2].
Several methods have been presented to deal with the
dead-time issue. These methods include dead-time compensation [3]–[11], dead-time elimination [12]–[15] and dead-time
minimization [16]–[19]. Most of the dead-time compensation
methods are developed based upon the knowledge of current
polarities. In order to determine the direction of current, an
accurate current sensor is required. However, the result is highly
affected by the harmonics around the zero-crossing points,
particularly when the current is small. Moreover, some of the
dead-time compensation methods [10], [11] highly rely upon
plant parameters.
For the dead-time minimization method, dead time is still
required when the current is around zero-crossing points in
which current polarity detection is difficult and not accurate.
Therefore, the dead-time effect cannot be completely removed
under this circumstance.
Manuscript received April 17, 2008; revised January 12, 2009. First published February 6, 2009; current version published June 3, 2009.
The authors are with National Taipei University of Technology, Taipei
10608, Taiwan (e-mail: t9319006@ntut.edu.tw; yslai@ntut.edu.tw).
Color versions of one or more of the figures in this paper are available online
at http://ieeexplore.ieee.org.
Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/TIE.2009.2014305

In [12]–[15], current polarity is determined by detecting
the terminal voltages of the antiparallel diode of a power device. Therefore, the dead-time elimination method is developed
based upon the detection method. However, two power sources
are required for each inverter leg or half-bridge of converter. For
a three-phase inverter, four power sources for such detection
circuits are required.
Moreover, the conduction states of power antiparallel diode
are detected only at the instants of rising edge of chop on,
as shown in [15]. It may result in detection error due to
switching noise and current ripple in practice and therefore
cause commutation error.
More details of the comparisons are summarized in Table I.
There are three categories: 1) dead-time compensation [3]–[11];
2) dead-time elimination [13]–[15]; and 3) dead-time minimization [16]–[19]. For the dead-time minimization method,
dead time is required as current is smaller than a certain
value. Moreover, this current level depends upon the resolution
of the current sensor. This paper will present a dead-time
elimination scheme for PWM-controlled inverter/converter.
The presented dead-time elimination scheme does not require
separate power supplies for freewheeling-current detection of
high- and low-side power devices. Therefore, only one power
source is required for freewheeling-current polarity detection of
three-phase inverter/converter.
The presented scheme includes the freewheeling-current polarity detection circui and the PWM control generator without
dead time. Current polarity is detected regularly with a sampling frequency which is higher than the switching frequency
to reduce the detection error. Experimental results derived
from a field-programmable-gate-array (FPGA)-based PWMcontrolled inverter are shown to demonstrate the effectiveness.

0278-0046/$25.00 © 2009 IEEE

4 shows the PWM control without dead time. when power device “A+ ” is turned off and the current direction retains. 3(a).” as shown in Fig. (a) Inverter/converter leg. 2 shows the phase voltage and current of the inverter output. Current distortion caused by dead time. (b) P cell. the chop signals (or PWM signals) for high. Similar facts occur to power device “A− ” and diode “D+ a ”. which conducts negative current. .real . the output voltage vo (t) is with distortion as compared to that without dead time (see waveforms A and B). 3(a) shows the circuit of an inverter leg or half-bridge of converter. A. these control signals are modified by adding a dead time in each rising pulse. As shown in Fig.2122 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS. 3(b)]. (c) N cell. P ROPOSED D EAD -T IME E LIMINATION S CHEME Fig. 1. As shown in Fig. once current is positive. PWM Generator Without Dead Time Fig. 3. II. as shown in Fig. an antiparallel diode is connected with a power device. For the conventional PWM control method. waveforms A and B cross each other at points P1 and P2. (a) Inverter leg/half-bridge of converter. 56. the real output voltage is greater (smaller) than its command as current is negative (positive). However.” to give the control signals indicated by “Chop A+ ” and “Chop A− . power device ” are defined as a “P” cell for positive “A+ ” and diode “D− a current control (current flowing into the load side). dead time is no more needed. there is no need to turn on the opposite power device during this turn-off period. Once no switching occurs to its opposite power device. Fig. 3(b). “D− a ” will provide the current path when power device “A+ ” is turned off. P-cell control is retained. E FFECT OF D EAD T IME Fig.” as shown in Fig. as shown in Fig. there is no PWM control signal for N-cell control. 1(a) shows the circuit of an inverter leg or half-bridge of converter. In addition. Due to the delay of drive circuit and turn-off delay of power devices. Therefore. the antiparallel diode of its opposite power device provides the current path. “td . Fig. Fig. 4(a). As the power device is off while the current conduction continues. VOL. 1(b).ideal ” and “va. 2.and low-side power devices are with 180◦ phase shift. 2. power device “A− ” and diode “D+ a” are defined as “N” cell [as shown in Fig. The output current io (t) is also distorted at these two zero-crossing points. P-cell and N-cell of inverter/converter leg. 2. Therefore. Meanwhile. For example. This additional dead time results in output voltage distortion which is defined as the difference between “va. Therefore. 6. 1(b). (b) Voltage distortion caused by dead time. As shown in Fig. Voltage distortion caused by dead time. NO. JUNE 2009 Fig. III.

. 5.and multiphase inverter/converter. namely. and only slight modifications to the PWM signal are required. 8(a). 7. 7. Previous detection circuit [15]. 6. Fig. when current is negative. and no short through will occur. Similarly. Fig. Fig. 4. the chop signal is changed to a PWM control signal. Signals for PWM generator. (a) P-cell control. 6. The control signals can therefore be summarized as follows: Chop A+ = chop • sgn(iL ) − Chop A = chop • sgn(iL ). For inverter control. Fig.LIN AND LAI: ELIMINATION OF PWM-CONTROLLED INVERTER/CONVERTER WITHOUT SEPARATE POWER SOURCES 2123 Fig. In Fig. dead time is no longer needed. the terminal voltage becomes negative during the switch-off period. This special feature provides the potential of modularization of the detection circuit. dead time is no longer required while guaranteeing no short through between positive and negative dc links. when iL > 0. a PWM control signal is applied to N cell only. 7 shows the presented freewheeling-current polarity detection circuit. (b) N-cell control. Furthermore. the modifications can be realized by a digital controller. These separate power sources increase the difficulty for modularization of the detection circuit. 6 shows the polarity detection of freewheeling current. 5 shows the relationship between the chop signals and the control signals of converter without dead time. “Vcc1 ” and “Vcc2 . only one power source is required for the detection circuit for both single.” as shown in Fig. 7. The required number of separate power sources is increased up to four for a three-phase inverter. Freewheeling-Current Polarity Detection Circuit Without Isolated Power Fig. the required calculation is simple. The PWM generator can be realized using (1) and (2). Since there is no switching in the power device of P cell. as shown in Fig. PWM control based upon P cell and N cell. iL < 0. The detection circuit requires two separate power sources. B. (1) (2) As shown in (1) and (2). Therefore. As shown in Fig. Fig. iL > 0. Proposed detection circuit.

11 shows the flowchart of the PWM generator without dead time. If Fig.). The presented circuit for the dead-time elimination circuit and the method are indeed effective. as illustrated in [20]. As shown in Fig. tk ≤ 1 (1 − D)ts 2 then iL. high-side power device) is turned on only when the antiparallel diode of its counterpart (low-side power device) is conducting current. the terminal voltage can be used to reflect the polarity of freewheeling current. The current polarity is detected by the proposed detection circuit.. and there is no change of current polarity. In this case. In the presented paper. e. Moreover.. small inductor of load. Once the polarity of current is determined.. as shown in Fig. Experimental system. ZVS can be achieved for the inverter with small inductance load and proper dead time. Fig. VOL. the possibility for ZVS seems dim. high-side power device) is turned on as its antiparallel diode (e. 9. 2. and the current polarity is changed. and the current polarity is changed. IV. dead time is not required. Fig. the average Fig. As shown in Fig. 56. 10. 12 shows the details of FPGA . 6.g. during the switch-off period. the power device (e. the output current polarity changes very quickly in the zero-crossing area. NO. Note that no real average value of load current is calculated. More details of the specifications of induction motor are shown in the Appendix. high-side power device) is conducting current. The proposed PWM generator without dead time is realized using FPGA. Freewheeling-Current Polarity Detection for Current With Multiple Zero-Crossing Points Under some conditions. 10. Therefore. Therefore.avg > 0. current becomes negative. . 8(b). 9. Once the period between “chop off” and zerocrossing point is slightly greater than 0. “N” cell is switched on and off when current is negative. Terminal voltage and PWM control signals without dead time. 8. .g. There may be a few zero-crossing points. Fig.5(1 − D)ts . 10..g. . The “P”-cell control signal is generated as current is positive. using class-D amplifier as an example.g. 3. More details about the experimental results for confirmation will be shown in Section IV. The polarity change rule is therefore modified as follows. JUNE 2009 Fig. the control signals of converter/inverter can be generated by (1) and (2). E XPERIMENTAL R ESULTS C. To deal with such ambiguous situation. Similarly. the terminal voltage is positive and greater than the dc-link voltage when iL < 0. If tk > 1 (1 − D)ts 2 then iL.2124 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS. a single-phase induction motor is used as the load. (b) iL < 0. where tk = time interval between “chop off” and zero-crossing point (k = 1. the concept of average current is used as an assistance index for the judgment of current polarity. as shown in Fig. only one power source is required for the proposed detection circuit.avg ≤ 0. Load current with several crossing points around zero-current area. 10 shows the experimental setup. and the power device (e. (a) iL > 0.

As shown in Fig. Flowchart of the implementation. As shown in Fig. respectively. 12. and the detected polarity. FPGA implementation of the proposed dead-time elimination Fig.3. the proposed method indeed provides significant improvement to the current distortion caused by dead time. PWM signals. 16 shows the measured load current with several crossing points around zero-current area. 11. 16. Fig. as shown in Fig. . 13 shows the experimental results of current.9. for modulation index = 0. and the PWM control signals do not require any dead time.LIN AND LAI: ELIMINATION OF PWM-CONTROLLED INVERTER/CONVERTER WITHOUT SEPARATE POWER SOURCES 2125 Fig.9. 13. Ch2 = Chop A+ . Since the dead time for the presented method is eliminated. Ch1 = iL .3 and 0. The polarity of freewheeling current is detected regularly with a sampling frequency which is higher than the switching frequency to reduce the detection error. 14 and 15. as shown in Figs. Fig. scheme. (a) PWM control with 2-µs dead time. implementation of the proposed dead-time elimination method. Ch3 = Chop A− . Fig. as modulation index = 0. Ch4 = sgn(iL ).3. Measured current. 13. 14(a) with 14(b) for modulation index = 0. Comparing Fig. 14. Experimental results. Fig. (b) PWM control without dead time. the current distortion associated with dead time can be removed. 15. the proposed method can detect the polarity. Similar results can be derived as modulation index increases. modulation index = 0.

V. 1605–1612. 40. The related current THD for the conventional PWM method with dead time = 2 µs is also included in Fig. 835–844. R EFERENCES Fig. 16. The current distortion caused by dead time can be removed by using the proposed method. 56. NO. no. Shyu. Lazhar. the current THD for the proposed method is indeed significantly reduced.” IEEE Trans. (b) PWM control without dead time. Ch2: chop.. “Dead-time issues in predictive current control. There are a few zero-crossing points. S. Ind. and 0. Oct. pp. Measured current THD. 17. 17 shows the measured current total harmonic distortion (THD) results of the proposed dead-time elimination PWM method. VOL. Summers and R. Measured load current with several crossing points around zerocurrent area. (a) PWM control with 2 µs dead time. the output current polarity changes very quickly in the zerocrossing area. pp. Ind. and Ch4: sgn(iL. [3] B.. . As shown in Fig. Ch3: Dan . and the current polarity is changed. J. 17 for comparison.. pp. The proposed detection circuit can be easily incorporated into the inverter/converter hardware. 51. 2004. C ONCLUSION Fig. no. as shown in Fig. Fig. E. 5. S. Lai and F.5(1 − D)ts . “Optimal common-mode voltage reduction PWM technique for inverter control with consideration of the dead-time effects—Part I: Basic development. Appl. the presented circuit for the dead-time elimination circuit and the method are indeed effective.” IEEE Trans. Nov. 1113–1118. Measured current. no.9. 2004. JUNE 2009 Fig. May/Jun. the average current becomes negative. 16. vol. 3. 6. 2) Present the PWM control method without dead time based upon the proposed current polarity detection circuit.2126 IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS. 40.” IEEE Trans. Therefore. 16. as shown in Fig. 3) Confirm the effectiveness of the proposed detection circuit and PWM control without dead time. B./Dec. modulation index = 0. Ch1: iL . “On the compensation of dead time and zero-current crossing for a PWM-inverter-controlled AC servo drive. Ind. Based upon the concept of average current. 6. 60 Hz. 110 V. vol. A PPENDIX Specifications of induction motor: single phase. Electron. [2] Y.25 hp.avg ). 1) Propose a current polarity detection circuit which requires one power source only for inverter/converter. Betz. four poles. 2004. Appl. The contributions of this paper include the following. thus confirming the advantages of the method. vol. once the period between “chop off” and zero-crossing point is slightly greater than 0. 15. 17. 5 A. [1] T.

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