This paper presents the design and hardware implementation of open-source hardware dedicated to smart converter systems development. Smart converters are simple or interleaved converters. They are equipped with controllers that are able to online impedance match for the maximum power transfer. These conversion systems are particularly feasible for photovoltaic and all renewable energies systems working in continuous changing operating conditions. Smart converters represent promising solutions in recent energetic scenarios, in fact their application is deepening and widening. In this context, the availability of a hardware platform could represent a useful tool. The platform was conceived and released as an open hardware instrument for academy and industry to benefit from the improvements brought by the researchers’ community. The usage of a novel, open-source platform would allow many developers to design smart converters, focusing on algorithms instead of electronics, which could result in a better overall development ecosystem and rapid growth in the number of smart converter applications. The platform itself is proposed as a benchmark in the development and testing of different maximum power point tracking algorithms. The designed system is capable of accurate code implementations, allowing the testing of different current and voltage-controlled algorithms for different renewable energies systems. The circuit features a bi-directional radio frequency communication channel that enables real-time reading of measurements and parameters, and remote modification of both algorithm types and settings. The proposed system was developed and successfully tested in laboratory with a solar module simulator and with real photovoltaic generators. Experimental results indicate state-of-art performances as a converter, while enhanced smart features pave the way to system-level management, real-time diagnostics, and on-the-flight parameters change. Furthermore, the deployment feasibility allows different combinations and arrangements of several energy sources, converters (both single and multi-converters), and modulation strategies. To our knowledge, this project remains the only open-source hardware smart converter platform used for educational, research, and industrial purposes so far.
|Titolo:||Open-source hardware platforms for smart converters with cloud connectivity|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2019|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|