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Modified multistage semiconductor-Fitch generator topology with magnetic compression

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For non-thermal plasma technology corona discharge devices high-voltage, high-current pulses are used with very high demands considering rising voltage slopes. Many solid state pulse power modulator (SSPPM) system topologies are known however most include a high power transformer compromising the overall system efficiency. A modified Fitch generator topology is introduced enlarging the output voltage to supply voltage ratio to theoretically the factor of three. Moreover the output voltage waveform enables the magnetic pulse compressor cross-section minimization with the factor of 0,67 due to a unique output voltage waveform. Test stand results are given for a 10-stage construction and a single stage magnetic compressor, power switch dynamic parameters influence on systems efficiency is discussed.
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Modified multistage semiconductor-Fitch
generator topology with magnetic compression
Stanisław Kalisiak
*
, Marcin Hołub
*
Szczecin University of Technology, Electrical Engineering Department, Szczecin, Poland, e-mail: kal@ps.pl
Szczecin University of Technology, Electrical Engineering Department, Szczecin, Poland, e-mail: mholub@ps.pl
Abstract For non-thermal plasma technology corona
discharge devices high-voltage, high-current pulses are used
with very high demands considering rising voltage slopes.
Many solid state pulse power modulator (SSPPM) system
topologies are known however most include a high power
transformer compromising the overall system efficiency. A
modified Fitch generator topology is introduced enlarging
the output voltage to supply voltage ratio to theoretically the
factor of three. Moreover the output voltage waveform
enables the magnetic pulse compressor cross-section
minimization with the factor of 0,67 due to a unique output
voltage waveform. Test stand results are given for a 10-stage
construction and a single stage magnetic compressor, power
switch dynamic parameters influence on systems efficiency
is discussed.
Keywords Pulsed power converter, Fitch generator,
plasma supply systems, resonant converter.
I. INTRODUCTION
Modern plasma technology systems often require high
voltage, high current, short duration pulse power supplies
[1,2,3,4]. Although fast development of modern power
switches (most of all thyristors and LTTs) results in high
blocking voltage ratings, costs and rise and fall times are
often hard to adopt in pulsed power systems, most of all
considering sources with short rising and falling edge de-
mands. Many system topologies have been introduced in
order to multiply the output voltage/blocking voltage ratio
when compared to single switch. Most important ones
include the Marx topology [5] depicted partly in Fig. 1
and the Fitch topology [6] (also called resonant charge
transfer Marx topology).
Fig. 1. A classical Marx [5] topology pulse power source. SG – spark
gap switch, C – capacitor, R – charging resistance.
Modern designs include solid state switches instead of
spark-gap or gaseous switches (as thyratrons) because of
the well known advantages as lifetime, control apparatus
simplification and output frequencies. However the
overall tendency is that with rising blocking voltage
ratings dynamic parameters of the switches are heavily
decreased. In order to maintain high output voltage
capabilities with fast switch responses modular
construction was developed enabling output voltage
multiplication without the use of a high voltage
transformer.
II. MODIFIED, MULTILEVEL-FITCH CONVERTER
TOPOLOGY
A modification of the Fitch topology is proposed incre-
menting the voltage multiplication factor of a single
module to three. Solid state switch based construction is
presented in Fig. 2, a single stage clarifying basics of
operation is depicted in Fig. 3.
Fig. 2. Proposed, modified Fitch generator topology.
Fig. 3. Single power stage of the pulsed power system.
Principle of operation can be discussed using schematic
waveforms from Fig. 4. While the power switch is not
operated the output voltage U
out
is equal or close to zero
and the voltage amplitude across capacitors C
1
, C
2
, C
3
is
matched to charging voltage and the polarization agrees
with the one depicted in Fig. 3.
When the solid state switch (Figures include an IGBT
transistor) is operated output voltage U
out
is equal to the
sum of capacitor voltages U
C1
+U
C2
+U
C3
, that is the
instant voltage value at the beginning of the recharge
process equals –U
C
.
The recharging process begins and the voltage changes
according to (1):
(
)
tUU
Cout
ω
cos21
=
, (1)
where
LC
1
=ω
when L
2
=L
3
=L and C
1
=C
2
=C
3
=C.
Fig. 4. Principle of a single stage operation.
The condition to recharge capacitors simultaneously can be
achieved by magnetic coupling of recharge inductances L
2
and L
3
. For a serial connection of n number of stages
(Fig. 2) following output voltage equation can be obtained:
(
)
tUnU
C
n
out
ω
cos21
)(
=
(2)
As can be derived from resonant capacitor recharge
conditions with high quality factor after the half-period of:
LC
T
π=
2
(3)
overall output voltage reaches:
Cout
UnU
=
3
(max)
. (4)
Equation 4 summarizes the advantage of the topology
introduced, a fact of tripling the supply voltage on a single
voltage stage.
III. INFLUENCE OF DYNAMIC SWITCH PARAMETERS ON
SYSTEM EFFICIENCY
In case of short pulse formation in high voltage circuits
solid-state switch dynamic losses have a major efficiency
impact. In case of the described topology an equivalent
circuit can be used depicting the serial connection of
resulting capacity and inductance with the power switch
(Fig. 5a). In the converter prototype constructed Ixys
IGBT IXDN 55N120 D1 transistors were used, with a
nominal rise time of t
r
=70ns. Considering voltage-current
waveforms of the switching element an analytical
approach can be used as depicted in Fig. 5b.
A. Simplified approach
Considering waveforms depicted in Fig. 5. a simplified
energy loss analysis can be led taking linear collector
current and collector-emitter voltage waveforms during
switching. Because of the system equivalent circuit
mainly turn-on losses will have a strong impact on system
efficiency. As can be denoted from theoretical turn-on
losses equation energy loss can be described as:
+
6
2
)(0
0
2
satCEC
C
r
loss
UU
U
L
t
E
(5)
and in respect to the energy stored in capacitor at the
beginning of the recharge process E
stored
:
+
3
2
)(0
0
2
satCEC
C
r
stored
loss
UU
CLU
t
E
E
(6)
Fig. 5. a) - equivalent circuit, b) – power switch voltage-current
analytical waveforms.
A graphical illustration of the dependency (6) is presented
in Fig. 6 together with the calculated recharge half-period.
Calculations were led using Ixys transistor parameters, C
= 44nF, U
C0
= 600V.
Fig. 6. Simplified, analytical energy loss ratio and recharge half-period.
As can be denoted for the inductances above 3µH the
energy loss ratio should not exceed 1,5%, which also is in
good agreement with results presented in [7]. Further
output pulse shortening, and in consequence resonant
inductance L minimization leads to dramatic energy loss
enlargement, furthermore power switch critical ratings
limit the current rising slope. In consequence the energy
efficiency suddenly drops if the T/2 / t
r
factor is lower than
approximately 10. For the inductance values above 3µH
no significant efficiency improvement is achieved and the
output pulse length is increased, which is undesirable in
the analyzed case. Of course dynamical switching
parameters of the switch are crucial as described in (6),
the influence of switching-on time was investigated with
the means of different gate resistance values R
G
. Measured
values are presented in Fig. 7.
Fig. 7. Measured turn-on energy loss as a function of gate resistance.
B. Quality factor approach
Alternative analysis can be led using not energy balance
equations or each of its components into account but a
summarized, mean value based on the energy balance
before and after the recharge half-period. The quality
factor Q for the equivalent circuit presented in Fig. 5a) is
given by:
R
L
Q
0
ω
=
, (7)
where
LC
1
0
=ω
. (8)
Fig 8. Quality factor – output voltage waveform influence
Considering the quantities given in (7) and (8) an equation
can be derived for the output voltage U
out
waveform as a
function of supply voltage U
C0
and the quality factor Q:
( )
=
Q
t
Cout
etUU
2
0
0
cos21
ω
ω (9)
A graphical illustration of single module operation for the
supply voltage U
C0
=600V is given in Fig. 8.
The dependency was also examined using the test-stand
measurements. Circuit damping was adjusted using
different transistor gate resistances therefore changing the
switching-on behavior as seen in Fig. 7. Results of a
single capacitor recharge voltage U
C
waveform are
depicted in Fig. 9, tests were led using supply voltage of
600V. Gate resistance was adjusted between R
G
=3.3 and
R
G
=100.
Fig. 9. Capacitor recharge voltage U
C
as a function of time and gate
resistance R
G
.
From (9) voltage recharge ratio can be obtained
describing the percentage of initial capacitor voltage U
C0
transfer after the recharge half-period (U
C(t=T/2)
). The
analytical solution is given by:
+=
=
14
0
)2/(
21
3
1
Q
C
TtC
e
U
U
π
(10)
Fig. 10. Voltage recharge ratio as a function of quality factor Q.
A graph showing the recharge ratio described in (10) is
shown in Fig. 10 for the quality factor Q range between 5
and 100. All the dependencies given are for a single
module of the construction as depicted in Fig. 3.
As can be denoted from Fig. 10 module’s quality factor
should be possibly high, with the minimal value of
approximately Q25 for high system efficiency. A series
of measurements led, depicted in Fig. 9, leads to
summarization of transistor t
r
ratings influence on systems
quality factor and efficiency given in Table 1
(measurements were led for a single module,
L
2
=L
3
=3,5µH, C
1
=C
2
=C
3
=44nF as depicted in Fig. 3.):
TABLE I.
IGBT TRANSISTOR DYNAMIC PARAMETERS INFLUENCE ON SYSTEMS
QUALITY FACTOR AND RECHARGE EFFICIENCY
R
G
[]
U
C0
[V] U
C(t=T/2)
[V] Q [p.u.] E
loss
/E
stored
[%]
100 602 -120 1 96
51 598 -354 3 65
20 602 -480 6,94 36
10 600 -534 13,48 21
5,1 595 -568 33,82 9
3,3 600 -572 32,87 9
As can be denoted for nominal gate resistance of 5,1
the practically verified quality factor reaches almost 34,
which compared to Fig. 10 should result in energy
efficiency of approximately 97%. Except for transistor
turn-on (Fig. 6) losses also ohm (current displacement)
losses and magnetic material properties are visible.
IV. MAGNETIC COMPRESSION
Compression of output pulses is often necessary in
order to obtain required timing parameters of the output
pulse, most of all considering
dt
dU
out
factor. Plasma
systems using pulsed corona discharge phenomena require
very short output pulses of a few hundred nanoseconds
[8]. Additional applications of voltage magnetic
compressors include typical systems were pulsed power
systems or solid state pulse power modulators (SSPPM)
are used, that is laser supplies [9], Z-pinch supplies [10].
Introduced topology exhibits a unique property of
magnetic system size reduction. In case of serially charged
capacitors in the moment of magnetic compression
following condition has to be fulfilled:
S
T
nout
ABNdtU =
2/
0
)(
, (11)
where N is the number of turns, B is the change of
magnetic field and A
S
is the magnetic core cross-section.
Because, as can be denoted from Fig. 4, the integral
voltage value is lowered through the initiating and ending
negative voltage for the same U
out
smaller cross-sections
of pulse compressors can be chosen. Fig. 11 depicts output
voltage waveforms of a classical Fitch topology compared
to the proposed, modified topology. Calculations were led
for identical U
out
voltage peak values, U
C0
of 600V,
inductance and capacitor values as described in paragraph
III.B.
As can be noted from Fig. 11 for the same peak voltage
values voltage integrals will vary, that is the ration of
integral values of proposed topology to a classical Fitch
converter can be described as:
( )
67,0
5,1
)cos1(5,1
cos21
0
0
2/
0
00
2/
0
00
=
C
C
T
C
T
C
ULC
ULC
dttU
dttU
π
π
ω
ω
(12)
In consequence the magnetic compressor material’s cross
section can be reduced with the coefficient of
approximately 0,67 when compared to classical Fitch
generator output waveforms.
V. TEST STAND CONSTRUCTION AND TEST RESULTS
Proposed topology was designed and constructed in
Laboratory of Power Electronic Converters, Szczecin
University of Technology. A 10-stage converter was
developed with a DSP control system. For the resonant
recharge modules WIMA FKP capacitors were used, a
parallel connection of two 22nF capacitors for a maximum
of 6000V for a single LC branch. A “litz” wire was used
for inductance windings in order to minimize the damping
coefficients of the system. RM14 cores were used,
measured inductance was in the range of 3,5 µH, stray
resistance (Fluke PM6304 bridge, for 100kHz) was in the
range of 10m. In consequence the quality factor for a
single stage reaches 34 .As previously mentioned Ixys
Fig. 11. Half-period output voltage waveforms of a classical Fitch
converter and the proposed, modified topology.
Fig. 12. Converter construction of the modified Fitch topology pulse
power source, 10-stage construction.
IXDN 55N120 D1 IGBTs were implemented. A SMPS
charging power supply was used in order to supply driver
stages of consecutive modules. Prototype construction is
depicted in Fig. 12.
Measurements were led using LeCroy Wave Runner
6100A digital oscilloscope with PPE 20kV voltage probe
and Fluke ISM 50/10 passive current shunt. Typical
output voltage waveforms for different supply voltages are
presented in Fig. 13.
As can be denoted maximal voltage reaches
approximately 17,3kV, considering supply voltage of
600V the practical conversion factor is 2,88 per stage.
Because of poor dynamical power diode behaviour RCD
snubbers were used across IGBT transistors. Difference
between theoretical and practical voltage multiplication
factor is caused mainly by transistor losses, limited quality
factor and supply voltage distribution among consecutive
stages.
Fig. 13. Typical output voltage waveforms for different supply voltages,
10-stage construction.
Fig. 14. Single stage magnetic compression output waveforms.
A single stage magnetic compressor circuit was
implemented with following parameters: C
k
= 1,466 nF,
L
k(initial)
= 1,21 mH. Fig. 14 depicts measured output
voltage and current waveforms.
Spark gap switches were used as plasma load, voltage
rise time ratings were improved with the factor of
approximately 2,3, which is comparable to results
obtained in [11]. Digital oscilloscope registered rise time
values (10% - 90% of the waveform amplitude) shown an
improvement from 690 ns for the voltage rising slope
before the magnetic compressor to 300ns after
compression, better results are obtainable when dedicated
nanocrystalline or amorphous materials can be used [12].
VI. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
Paper presented introduces a modified, solid state Fitch-
generator topology with increased voltage conversion
factor and improved output voltage form in terms of
magnetic pulse compression circuit dimensions. Test stand
analysis proved the voltage conversion factor of 2,88 and
magnetic pulse compression circuit material’s cross
section minimization by the factor of 0,67. Both analytical
description and test results had proven the correctness of
converter construction concept.
Power, solid state switch dynamical parameters
influence on system’s efficiency is discussed as both
simplified energy loss approach and quality factor
discussion. Both analytical discussion (Fig. 6) and
measurements led had proven that dynamical transistor
parameters influence strongly the overall energy
efficiency of the converter, used IXYS transistors, with
their nominal t
r
=70ns belong to the group of fast
switching devices, however much faster switches are
reported in literature (IXYS DE475-102N21A, Infineon
SPP20N65C3) but are hard to find on the market and are
relatively expensive.
Considering control circuitry special attention has to be
taken because of high voltages and surge voltage output,
light-fibre control signal transmission and carefully
designed charging voltage supply are necessary.
Main drawbacks of the topology used include both the
number and necessary quality of passive resonant
construction elements. Moreover fast power switches have
to be used with possibly large collector-emitter blocking
voltage ratings. Poor dynamical diode behaviour implies
the use of additional snubber circuitry therefore
minimizing the voltage conversion factor. Great attention
has to be used in order to achieve possibly high circuit
quality factor ratings, careful design and precise
construction are necessary.
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... A modification of the Fitch topology is proposed incrementing the voltage multiplication factor of a single module to three [13]. Basic topology of a single converter module is depicted in Fig. 1. ...
... The condition to recharge capacitors simultaneously can be achieved by magnetic coupling of recharge inductances L 2 and L 3 . For a serial connection of n number of stages [13] following output voltage equation can be obtained: ...
... Output voltage and current waveforms were examined for different supply voltage values. A prototype, 10-stage construction was implemented with a DSP based control system [13]. Generator construction is depicted in Fig. 5. Two modes of operation were examined: with and without output magnetic compressor. ...
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Non-thermal plasma discharge devices require high-voltage, high-current supply pulses. Presented solid state pulse power modulator (SSPPM) represents a modified Fitch generator topology characterized by enlarging the output voltage to supply voltage ratio to theoretically the factor of three. Output voltage waveform enables the magnetic pulse compressor cross-section minimization with the factor of 0,67 due to a unique output voltage waveform. Test stand results are given and discussed for a 10-stage prototype construction and a single stage magnetic compressor.
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A photo-triggered discharge is used to study the influence of three hydrocarbons (HCs), propene (C3H6), n-decane (C10H22), and toluene (C6H5CH3) on NO conversion in N2/O2/NO/HC mixtures, with 18.5% O2 concentration, 700ppm of NO, and an hydrocarbon concentration ranging between 190ppm and 2,700ppm. The electrical system generates a transient homogeneous plasma, working under 400mbar total pressure, with a 50ns short current pulse at a repetition frequency up to a few Hz. The NO concentration at the exit of the reactor is quantified using absolute FTIR spectroscopy measurements, as a function of the specific deposited energy in the discharge and the mixture composition. Owing to the plasma homogeneity, the experimental results can be compared to predictions of a self-consistent 0-D discharge and kinetic model based on available data in the literature about reactions and their rate constants. It is shown that the addition of either propene (as for DBD or corona discharges) or n-decane to N2/O2/NO leads to an improvement of the NO removal as compared to the mixture without hydrocarbon molecules. The adopted kinetic schemes explain this effect for the two mixture types. On the other hand, both the experiments and model predictions emphasize that the addition of toluene does not lead to the improvement of NO conversion. Moreover, compounds that are useful for NO x reduction catalysis, such as aldehydes, are less produced in the mixture with toluene.
Conference Paper
Rotating spark gap devices for switching high-voltage direct current into a corona plasma reactor can achieve pulse rise times in the range of tens of nanoseconds. A single-gap circuit is effective for generating moderate peak voltages, but is limited by a multiple sparking phenomenon. A double-gap circuit can achieve equal peak voltages with every spark, but with a reduced number of pulses, compared to the single gap. Both configurations have an upper voltage imposed by the changing impedance of the reactor as voltage and frequency are varied. The pulse characteristics are reported for both types of circuits, along with some spectroscopic analyses. The general performance of the reactors for destruction of some compounds with both circuits is also reported. The single-gap supply is shown to provide a wider range of operating parameters than the double-gap supply but it is much more difficult to characterize the pulses, particularly their frequency, than with the double-gap supply
The development of industrial excimer and CO<sub>2</sub> TEA pulse lasers with average optical powers in the kilowatt range, requires pulsing circuits delivering average power levels of tens of kilowatt. Excitation pulses with voltage rise times in the order of 100 ns and peak voltages of more than 40 kV are required for efficient operation of the laser. To meet these requirements, primary switching must be carried out at tens of kA, at voltage levels in excess of 40 kV, and at repetition rates of several kHz. Endeavours to overcome the limitations of thyratrons have led to the development of an all solid-state driven pulser. This pulser makes use of a modular, thyristor switched, pulse power supply unit for primary pulse conversion. Pulses of 40 μs duration are supplied to a four-stage series magnetic pulse compressor to transform the pulses down to 150 ns for efficient laser excitation
Magnetic Characteristics of amorphous metal saturable reactors in pulse power systems
  • C H Smith
  • D M Nathasingh
C.H.Smith, D.M. Nathasingh: "Magnetic Characteristics of amorphous metal saturable reactors in pulse power systems", proceedings of European Particle Accelerator Conference, Berlin, Germany, 24-28 march 1992, pp. 1603-1605.