Performance and Cost Comparison of NPC, FC and SCHB Multilevel Converter Topologies for High-Voltage Applications

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Conference Proceeding
International Conference on Electrical Machines and Systems 2011 (ICEMS 2011), 2011, pp. 1 - 6
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The rapid increase in global energy consumption and the impact of greenhouse gas emissions have accelerated the renewable energy technology into a more competitive area. Due to the variable nature of renewable energy resources and power demand by the consumers, grid based renewable generation has gained significant popularity in the world. High-voltage converter can interconnect the renewable systems to the grid directly without introducing a lossy, costly and bulky transformer. Three popular multilevel converter topologies: Neutral Point Clamped (NPC), Flying Capacitor (FC) and Series Connected H-Bridge (SCHB) have successfully made their way into the industry and therefore can be considered a mature and proven technology for low and medium voltage applications. But most of them are not suitable for high-voltage applications. This paper presents the comparison of a Five-Level (5L)-NPC, a 5LFC, a 5L-SCHB, an Eleven-Level (11L)-NPC, an 11L-FC and an 11L-SCHB topologies for an 11 kV Voltage Source Converter (VSC). The comparison is made in terms of number of semiconductors, semiconductor cost, Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), filter size and control complexity.
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