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The field of power electronics is

concerned with the processing and

control of electrical power using high
efficiency electronic circuits The key
functional element in power electronics is
called a switching converter.
This lecture describes the basic functions
performed by switching converters and it
introduces how high efficincy electronic
can be constructed that realize these
The switching converter generally includes
two input terminals.
One is the power input.
Where the, where a source is connected.
The second input is a control input that
tells the converter how to process the
input power
to produce the output.
Dc to Dc conversion is a common function
performed by converters.
In which the voltage of the DC is changed
and possibly regulated.
So we may change a, say a high-input
voltage into a low DC output voltage.
Rectification is the converstion of AC to
And in the process we may
want to control the output voltage, the DC
output voltage.
And, and maybe also the AC input current
The inverse of rectification is called
inversion, in which we have a DC
input, and we produce an AC output of a
controllable frequency and magnitude.
AC to AC cycloconversion.
Involves changing the frequency and
the amplitude of, of the AC voltage.
In each of these, the switching converter
is the key electronic power processing
element, and it is composed of electronic
devices as well as reactive
elements and we attempt to, to build this
with very high efficiency.
Control is invariably required.
we usually want to regulate the output
We may, although, we may want to control
currents or other
quantities, so we're generally also
building some kind of control system.
That adjusts the control input to the
converter, for example, to regulate the
We can do this with either traditional
feedback or nowadays it's economically
feasible to use
quite sophisticated control using digital
High efficiency is essential in any
application that involves very much power.
We want high efficiency nowadays, of
course, because we want to conserve
But in addition to that it's simply not
possible and not economically feasible.
To process large amounts of power with low
efficiency because our convertor
will, will not be able to handle the heat
from the power lost.
So here's the equation for efficiency.
It's the ratio of output power to input
And the loss is the difference between the
input and output power, which we
can express in terms of the output power
and the efficiency in this way.
Now, our switching converters are loss
They're limited by the amount of heat
that we have and the size of the
And so for a loss limited converter with a
given an efficiency, this
limits the amount of output power that,
that the converter can produce.
So, if we can build a converter
with higher efficiency, then we can either
the the loss and build a smaller
converter, with smaller heat sinks, or
for the same amount of heat sinking, we
can get more output power.
And build a converter that produces more
So a measure of how good the converter
technology is
really is the ratio of the output power to
the efficiency.
And here it's expressed in terms of
We can solve for
this quantity and it turns out to be
efficienty divided by 1 minus efficiency.
And it's plotted here, and so you can see
that even increasing the
efficiency by a few percent can increase
the amount of output power or
reduce or increase the ratio of output
power to loss substantially, and so our
goal is to produce efficiencies that
approach one which, which makes the ratio
of output power to loss approach infinity.
So, the higher we can get on this curve,
the smaller our
converter can be, and the more input and
output power it can produce.
So this drawing here is meant to, to
represent a
very small size converter with very large
input and output converters.
So we have a very small converter with
very high efficiency.
The processes is a very large amount of
electric power.
How do we build a, a circuit that changes
the voltage with high efficiency?
Here's a, diagram of general, the
categories of electrical circuit elements
that we have.
Resistors, capacitors, magnetics, inc,
transformers and inductors, and
devices that here are generally grouped
into two, two categories.
The first is linear-mode transistors, such
as class A amplifiers or off-amp
circuits, and the second is switched-mode,
which is transistors that are operated.
As on-off devices, such as in a digital
circuit, where
they're either all the way on or all the
way off.
In signal processing, such as you probably
learned in undergraduate electronics and
circuits courses,
we usually avoid magnetics well, we don't
have to, but magnetics generally are more
Their hard to integrate on integrated
circuits, and most engineers
don't know how to design them and so for a
variety of reasons, we usually ignore or,
avoid magnetics.
But resistors and capacitors are fine,
and switch mode semiconductors are also
In power processing by contrast what we
to do is avoid using elements that consume
So for that reason we don't want to use
However, capacitors and magnetics are
fine, and
in fact.
It may be easier in a high power
application to build
a good inductor than it is to build a good
But, we commonly use inductors,
capacitors, transformers and other
elements because
although they store energy, they don't,
ideally they don't consume power.
And we can get that stored energy back at
some later time.
We avoid linear mode
transistors for the same reason that we
avoid resistors
with a class A amplifier for example
operates with
a transistor having voltage across it and
current through
it at the same time and so it consumes
On the other hand, switched mode.
Transistors or transistors that are
operated as on-off switches are, are good.
they don't consume power.
The reason for that is if we can get them
to operate close to the behavior of
an ideal switch, then what happens is when
switch is closed, there's no voltage
across the switch.
And when the switch is open, there's no
current through the switch and in either
state the power consumed by the switch
is the product of origin current is zero.
So to the extent that we can make a
device operate as an ideal switch, like
we, the, the semi-conductor device will be
So let's do a simple example of how to
build a
DC-DC converter with high efficiency and
using just inductors, capacitors, and
Okay, so I'm going to take simple
examples, some round numbers here.
We have
an input voltage I've labeled V g.
That is a power source.
And it has, it's a 100 volts.
And what we would like to do is change
100 volts into 50 volts to supply a
resistive load.
And just for some round numbers, let's
suppose the resistance is five ohms.
So that we have ten amps flowing through
our load.
So how can this converter be realized?
First of all, let's ask how you, you know
beginning circuits class,
what ciricuits do you know that could
change 100 volts into 50 volts.
Okay, well the resisted voltage divider is
one of
the first circuits taught usually in a
beginning circuits class.
And we learned that the, the output
voltage of the divider is
equal to this voltage divider ratio of the
load resistance over the
sum of the two resistances times the input
voltage, so if we
adjust this added resistor, to be the same
value as our load resistor,
we get a divider ratio of a half And the
output voltage will be half of the input.
The problem with this is that the same
current flowing to the load also flows
through this
resistor and the same power in the load
then is equal to the power in this
And so we will have our ten amps flowing
through the resistor.
That has 50 volts across it, so they'll be
500 watts of loss in this resistor.
There's 500 watts going to the
load and we draw 1000 watts out of each E,
so the efficiency is only 50%.
At low power levels, it's common to
build a series pass regulator circuit,
that operates
almost in the same way as the resist
voltage divider, except, instead of
resistor we put
a transistor that operates in the active
region, And it has the same voltage across
it that the resistor on the previous slide
had, so it dissipates the same 500 Watts.
When the series pass regulator with the
allows us to do is to build a feedback
loop that adjusts
the control or the drive of the transistor
to regulate the output voltage.
but in this example, the series pass
regular is approximately 50% efficient.
So, we need, a very large transistor that
can take 500
watts, and that has enough heat sinking to
dissipate that 500 watts,
which is not an easy thing to do.
Let's consider instead how to do this
function e, with switches.
So, instead of an active region transistor
we will
use a semi-conductors that are operated
like on-off switches.
And here I'm going to draw an ideal
switch, but we will realize
this switch in practice with transistors
and diodes that turn on and off.
So, let's suppose we have such a switch.
We switch it quickly between
positions one and two, so that the voltage
coming out of
the switch network from here to here, Vs
sub-t, has this waveform.
So when the switch is in position one, the
Vs, is equal to the input voltage, Vg, of
100 volts.
When the switch is in position two the
output voltage is zero, and we will
the switch so half of the time it's in
position one, and the other half it's
in position two.
Okay, what do we accomplish with this?
While a switch changes the DC voltage
So here's the, this actual waveform coming
out of the switch.
We can use Fourier analysis to find its DC
And you may recall from Fourier analysis
that the DC component of a waveform.
Is found by integrating the wave form over
one period, and then dividing by the
So if you integrate this wave form, the
integral is the area under this curve,
which is,
what, this width?
Dts times the height, Vg, so we get an
Of DTsVg and if you divide by the ts then
what we find for the dc component is that
it, it
is d times Vg or d is the duty cycle or
the fraction of time that the switch is in
position one.
Okay, so if the switch is in position one
for half of the time, the duty
cycle is a half and the out, the output
voltage of the switch has a dc
component that is half of the input.
So the switch succeeds, then, in changing
the DC component
of the voltage from 100 volts down to 50
Generally, we don't like to have that
switched voltage appear
across our load, so we will put a low-pass
and here's an L C low-pass filter that can
put in that If we design this filter
correctly, so the
cutoff frequency is much lower than the
switching frequency, this filter will
pass the DC component, but it will reject
the switching frequency in
its harmonics and not let them pass
through to the load, so
that the output voltage is smooth and
essentially is just the DC component.
Of 50 volts, so this a circuit that, can
the DC voltage and it does it with
components that are
ideally lossless, only switches, inductors
and capacitors, so it can
have effeciences that approach 100%.
this is known as the Butt converter.
Here is one way to realize the switch
using transistors and diodes.
We have an, a power mosfet and a power
diode that's switched together.
and I've also shown here a feedback
circuit, say
a simple analog feedback circuit, that
adjusts the duty cycle.
It, it actually turns the transistor on
and off and adjusts it's duty cycle.
To regulate the output voltage.
So this is a buck regulator.
It's possible to build converters that
change any voltage into any other voltage.
Here's an example of a boost converter.
that can increase the voltage.
So we can build circuits that
contain inductors, capacitors and switches
connected in
different ways that can actually change
voltage into any other voltage, as
Here's another example of a single
phase inverter.
Here we have two single pole double throw
With the load and filter connected
differentially between their outputs, so
the voltage, differentially, between the
two switch outputs, looks like this, can
switch between plus Vg when the switches
are in position one, or
minus V, Vg when the switches are in
position two, and by changing
the duty cycle, we can change the average
And we can actually modulate the duty
sinusoidally and make a sine wave of
output voltage.
If we like, if we want to produce say a dc
to ac inverter.
So, in this course you are going to learn
how to
build these converter circuits, how to
analyze them and model them.
To, for example, predict their
efficiencies and also how to design and
model their control systems.