Special Issue "Diagnostics and Fault Tolerance in DC-DC Converters and Related Industrial Electronics Technologies"

A special issue of Electronics (ISSN 2079-9292). This special issue belongs to the section "Industrial Electronics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 April 2023) | Viewed by 12264

Special Issue Editors

CISE - Electromechatronic Systems Research Centre, University of Beira Interior, Calçada Fonte do Lameiro, 6201-001 Covilhã, Portugal
Interests: diagnosis and fault tolerance of electrical machines, power electronics and drives
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
CISE-Electromechatronic Systems Research Centre, University of Beira Interior, Calçada Fonte do Lameiro, 6201-001 Covilhã, Portugal
Interests: fault diagnosis; fault tolerance; energy efficiency analysis; power electronics converters; electrical drives
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The deployment of DC energy systems is an attractive alternative to conventional AC-based energy distribution systems, improving the efficiency of energy supplies and promoting renewable energies. Within DC energy systems, industrial electronics and particularly DC–DC converters are the key technologies that establish the interface between the multiple individual units of DC energy systems. Semiconductors and electrolytic capacitors, as critical components of DC–DC power converters, are particularly susceptible to suffering faults, which have a critical impact on converter operation. The implementation of diagnostic, prognostic, and fault-tolerant strategies, which are able to effectively deal with the multiple failure modes prone to occurring in DC–DC converters, is a challenging goal and is yet to be fully achieved. Accordingly, novel advancements in the diagnostics, prognostics and fault tolerance of DC–DC converters and related industrial electronics technologies require further attention.

This Special Issue focuses on the discussion of emerging solutions suitable for leveraging the availability, reliability, and robustness of DC–DC industrial power electronics technologies. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

- Fault diagnostics and prognostics in DC–DC converters;
- Fault analysis in DC–DC converters;
- Fault-tolerant DC–DC converter topologies;
- Optimized control strategies for enhanced fault tolerance;
- Reliability predictions and the physics of failure of DC–DC converters;
- Thermal analysis of fault-tolerant DC–DC converters;
- Efficiency analysis and improvement of fault-tolerant DC–DC converters;
- Applications for fault-tolerant DC–DC converters (renewables integration, LED lighting, EV charging, etc.);
- Fault diagnostics in sensors;
- Reliable wide-bandgap technologies.

Prof. Dr. Antonio J. Marques Cardoso
Dr. Fernando Bento
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • DC–DC converters
  • efficiency
  • reliability
  • diagnostics
  • prognostics
  • fault tolerance

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Editorial

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Editorial
Diagnostics and Fault Tolerance in DC–DC Converters and Related Industrial Electronics Technologies
Electronics 2023, 12(10), 2341; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12102341 - 22 May 2023
Viewed by 617
Abstract
The deployment of DC energy systems is an attractive alternative to conventional AC-based energy distribution systems, improving the efficiency of energy supplies and promoting renewable energies [...] Full article

Research

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Article
GaN and SiC Device Characterization by a Dedicated Embedded Measurement System
Electronics 2023, 12(7), 1555; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12071555 - 25 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1148
Abstract
This work proposes a comparison among GaN and SiC device main parameters measured with a dedicated and low-cost embedded system, employing an STM32 microcontroller designed to the purpose. The system has the advantage to avoid the use of expensive laboratory measurement equipment to [...] Read more.
This work proposes a comparison among GaN and SiC device main parameters measured with a dedicated and low-cost embedded system, employing an STM32 microcontroller designed to the purpose. The system has the advantage to avoid the use of expensive laboratory measurement equipment to test the devices, allowing to obtain their behavior in operating conditions. The following KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are measured and critically compared: threshold voltage, on-resistance and input capacitance. All the measurements are carried out in a short time interval and on a wide range of switching frequencies, ranging from 10 kHz to 1 MHz. This investigation is focused on the deviation of the figures of merit when the switching frequency changes, since it is crucial for wide-bandgap devices. The devised, low-cost, microcontroller unit allows high flexibility and system portability, while the employed equivalent-time sampling technique overcomes some issues related to the need of high sampling frequency. It allows good performances with common microcontroller embedded AD converters. To validate the proposed system, the obtained results have been compared with the time-domain waveforms acquired with a traditional laboratory oscilloscope and a study of the system’s measurement errors has been carried out. Results show that GaN devices achieve a higher efficiency with respect to SiC devices in the considered range of switching frequencies. The on-resistance exhibited by GaN devices shows, as expected, an increase with frequency, which happens to switching losses, too. On the other hand, GaN devices are more sensitive to parasitic effects and the high dV/dt, due to the reduced switching times, can excite unwanted ringing phenomena. Full article
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Article
Open-Circuit Switch Fault Diagnosis and Accommodation of a Three-Level Interleaved Buck Converter for Electrolyzer Applications
Electronics 2023, 12(6), 1349; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12061349 - 12 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1237
Abstract
This article proposes a novel open-circuit switch fault diagnosis method (FDM) for a three-level interleaved buck converter (TLIBC) in a hydrogen production system based on the water electrolysis process. The control algorithm is suitably modified to ensure the same hydrogen production despite the [...] Read more.
This article proposes a novel open-circuit switch fault diagnosis method (FDM) for a three-level interleaved buck converter (TLIBC) in a hydrogen production system based on the water electrolysis process. The control algorithm is suitably modified to ensure the same hydrogen production despite the fault. The TLIBC enables the interfacing of the power source (i.e., low-carbon energy sources) and electrolyzer while driving the hydrogen production of the system in terms of current or voltage. On one hand, the TLIBC can guarantee a continuity of operation in case of power switch failures because of its interleaved architecture. On the other hand, the appearance of a power switch failure may lead to a loss of performance. Therefore, it is crucial to accurately locate the failure in the TLIBC and implement a fault-tolerant control strategy for performance purposes. The proposed FDM relies on the comparison of the shape of the input current and the pulse width modulation (PWM) gate signal of each power switch. Finally, an experimental test bench of the hydrogen production system is designed and realized to evaluate the performance of the developed FDM and fault-tolerant control strategy for TLIBC during post-fault operation. It is implemented with a real-time control based on a MicroLabBox dSPACE (dSPACE, Paderborn, Germany) platform combined with a TI C2000 microcontroller. The obtained simulation and experimental results demonstrate that the proposed FDM can detect open-circuit switch failures in one switching period and reconfigure the control law accordingly to ensure the same current is delivered before the failure. Full article
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Article
A Fault-Tolerant Bidirectional Converter for Battery Energy Storage Systems in DC Microgrids
Electronics 2023, 12(3), 679; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12030679 - 29 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1390
Abstract
Battery energy storage systems (BESSs) can control the power balance in DC microgrids through power injection or absorption. A BESS uses a bidirectional DC–DC converter to control the power flow to/from the grid. On the other hand, any fault occurrence in the power [...] Read more.
Battery energy storage systems (BESSs) can control the power balance in DC microgrids through power injection or absorption. A BESS uses a bidirectional DC–DC converter to control the power flow to/from the grid. On the other hand, any fault occurrence in the power switches of the bidirectional converter may disturb the power balance and stability of the DC microgrid and, thus, the safe operation of the battery bank. This paper presents a fault-tolerant topology along with a fault diagnosis algorithm for a bidirectional DC–DC converter in a BESS. The proposed scheme can detect open circuit faults (OCFs) and reconfigure the topology to guarantee the safe and continuous operation of the system while it is connected to the DC microgrid. The proposed method can be extended to multi-phase structures of interleaved bidirectional DC–DC converters using only two power switches and n TRIACs to support the OCF occurrence on 2 × n switches of n legs. The proposed fault diagnosis algorithm detects OCFs only by observing the current of the inductors and does not require any sensor. Hence, the cost, weight, volume and complexity of the system is considerably reduced. Experimental results show that the reconfiguration of the converter, along with its fast fault detection, leads to fewer switches overloading and less DC voltage deviation. Full article
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Article
Application of Artificial Intelligent Techniques for Power Quality Improvement in Hybrid Microgrid System
Electronics 2022, 11(22), 3826; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics11223826 - 21 Nov 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1008
Abstract
The hybrid AC-DC microgrid (MG) has gained popularity recently as it offers the benefits of AC and DC systems. Interconnecting AC-DC converters are necessary since the MG has both DC and AC sub-grids. Adding an extra harmonic adjustment mechanism to the interlinking converters [...] Read more.
The hybrid AC-DC microgrid (MG) has gained popularity recently as it offers the benefits of AC and DC systems. Interconnecting AC-DC converters are necessary since the MG has both DC and AC sub-grids. Adding an extra harmonic adjustment mechanism to the interlinking converters is promising because non-linear AC loads can worsen the quality of the voltage on the AC bus. The interlinking converters’ primary function is to interchange real and reactive power between DC and AC sub-grids, so the typical harmonic controlling approach implemented for active power filters (APFs) might not be appropriate for them. When the MG’s capacity is high, it is desirable that the switching frequency be lesser than the APFs. The performance of harmonic correction or even system stability may suffer at low switching frequencies. In this study, a harmonic compensating technique appropriate for hybrid AC-DC interlinking converters with lower switching frequencies is planned. The suggested strategy, modeling techniques, stability analysis, and a thorough virtual impedance design are discussed in this work. Full article
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Article
Utilizing Parallel Superconducting Element as a Novel Approach of Flux-Coupled Type SFCL to Limit DC Current in the System
Electronics 2022, 11(22), 3785; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics11223785 - 17 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1077
Abstract
To lessen the amount of energy lost during transmission, electricity is increasingly being sent using high-voltage lines. Transmission loss in a DC system is lower than in an AC system over long distances. The DC system can improve the efficiency of long-distance transmission [...] Read more.
To lessen the amount of energy lost during transmission, electricity is increasingly being sent using high-voltage lines. Transmission loss in a DC system is lower than in an AC system over long distances. The DC system can improve the efficiency of long-distance transmission by connecting power grids with different requirements. The DC method is becoming popular since it helps to keep the grid stable. Managing and blocking DC flow is crucial to system functionality. In this study, we explore the operation of a flux-coupled type superconducting fault current limiter (SFCL) in a DC system, where the two windings are connected in parallel to limit the fault current flow. A flux-coupled type SFCL is built by connecting two coils in parallel and a superconducting element (SE) in series with the secondary coil. The functions of an SFCL of the flux-coupled kind are equivalent in both direct and alternating current systems. Because of the opposing magnetic fluxes produced by the two coils, the voltage generated by the parallel connection of the coils is always zero. Inadequate SE leads to an increase in resistance, inhibiting the cancellation of opposing magnetic fluxes and hence a loss in power. Connecting the two coils in series allows voltage to be generated while the fault current is limited. To further validate the performance of SFCL with varying resistance and inductance, the system is additionally tested on the IEEE 39 bus system. The MATLAB/SIMULINK software suite is used to run the test system. Full article
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Review

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Review
Multi-Objective Optimization Algorithms for a Hybrid AC/DC Microgrid Using RES: A Comprehensive Review
Electronics 2023, 12(4), 1062; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12041062 - 20 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1919
Abstract
Optimization methods for a hybrid microgrid system that integrated renewable energy sources (RES) and supplies reliable power to remote areas, were considered in order to overcome the intermittent nature of RESs. The hybrid AC/DC microgrid system was constructed with a solar photovoltaic system, [...] Read more.
Optimization methods for a hybrid microgrid system that integrated renewable energy sources (RES) and supplies reliable power to remote areas, were considered in order to overcome the intermittent nature of RESs. The hybrid AC/DC microgrid system was constructed with a solar photovoltaic system, wind turbine, battery storage, converter, and diesel generator. There is a steady increase in the utilization of hybrid renewable energy sources with hybrid AC/DC microgrids; consequently, it is necessary to solve optimization techniques. Therefore, the present study proposed utilizing multi-objective optimization methods using evolutionary algorithms. In this context, a few papers were reviewed regarding multi-objective optimization to determine the capacity and optimal design of a hybrid AC/DC microgrid with RESs. Here, the optimal system consisted of the minimum cost of energy, minimum net present cost, low operating cost, low carbon emissions and a high renewable fraction. These were determined by using multi-objective optimization (MOO) algorithms. The sizing optimization of the hybrid AC/DC microgrid was based on the multi-objective grey wolf optimizer (MOGWO) and multi-objective particle swarm optimization (MOPSO). Similarly, multi-objective optimization with different evolutionary algorithms (MOGA, MOGOA etc.) reduces energy cost and net present cost, and increases the reliability of islanded hybrid microgrid systems. Full article
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Review
Buck-Boost DC-DC Converters for Fuel Cell Applications in DC Microgrids—State-of-the-Art
Electronics 2022, 11(23), 3941; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics11233941 - 28 Nov 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2530
Abstract
The use of fuel cells in DC microgrids has been receiving a lot of attention from researchers and industry since both technologies can deliver clean energy with little to no environmental impact. To effectively integrate fuel cells in DC microgrids, a power converter [...] Read more.
The use of fuel cells in DC microgrids has been receiving a lot of attention from researchers and industry since both technologies can deliver clean energy with little to no environmental impact. To effectively integrate fuel cells in DC microgrids, a power converter that can equate the fuel cell’s voltage with the DC microgrid’s reference voltage is required. Based on the typical output voltages of fuel cells, buck-boost topologies are commonly used in this type of application. A variety of DC-DC buck-boost topologies, showing distinctive merits and drawbacks, are available in the literature. Therefore, this paper compiles, compares and describes different DC-DC buck-boost topologies that have been introduced in the literature over the past few years. Additionally, some design considerations are addressed, and future work is proposed. Full article
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