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Electronics 2016, 5(2), 18; doi:10.3390/electronics5020018

A Comparative Reliability Study of Three Fundamental Multilevel Inverters Using Two Different Approaches

Department of Electrical Engineering, K.N. Toosi University of Technology, P.O. Box 16315-1355 Tehran, Iran
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Academic Editor: Mostafa Bassiouni
Received: 9 December 2015 / Revised: 15 March 2016 / Accepted: 11 April 2016 / Published: 15 April 2016
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Abstract

The reliability of power electronic devices and components is very important to manufacturers. In recent years, many researchers have conducted reliability assessments of power electronic devices, yet the reliability of numerous circuits used widely has not been evaluated. This paper presents a comprehensive reliability evaluation of fundamental multilevel inverters. The reliability of the multilevel inverters is analyzed by calculating the mean time to failure for each component. The calculation was performed by two methods (approximate and exact) to achieve better comparisons. The approximate method is similar to the parts count method used in MIL-HDBK-217 reliability standard, and the exact method exhibits the parts stress method. In the exact method, due to the direct relationship between component failure and temperature, we used Matlab Simulink to determine power losses in diodes and switches taking into account the temperature factor. The results determined by the approximate method showed that the three-level cascade H-bridge was the most reliable of the inverters considered. Although the exact method validates those results, and shows that cascade H-bridge (CHB) had a longer lifespan, but the calculated values are different. Therefore, using different approaches for evaluating reliability results in different outcomes. View Full-Text
Keywords: power electronics; reliability; multilevel inverters; failure rate; mean time to failure; redundancy power electronics; reliability; multilevel inverters; failure rate; mean time to failure; redundancy
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Alavi, O.; Hooshmand Viki, A.; Shamlou, S. A Comparative Reliability Study of Three Fundamental Multilevel Inverters Using Two Different Approaches. Electronics 2016, 5, 18.

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