29 Apr '13, 3pm

Germany Takes the Lead in HVDC

Ahndorf says he will pay the full-bridge’s efficiency penalty if he must, but he may not have to. HVDC innovators are racing to demonstrate smarter options. Alstom’s approach is to limit losses by substituting only some of the multilevel converter’s 2-IGBT submodules with full-bridge submodules. And in November, ABB demonstrated an entirely novel solution to efficient HVDC breaking: a stand-alone breaker that would sit on the HVDC line and be used along with the standard, two-IGBT converter. It couples a mechanical switch with two electronic breakers. In normal operation, electricity passes through the mechanical switch and the smaller of the two breakers. When the system detects a fault, the smaller breaker has just enough heft to start the breaking sequence, applying voltage to its IGBT gates to raise its resistance. That briefly shunts DC power through the larger breake...

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/germany-takes-...

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