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Title: Integrated on-board battery chargers for EVs based on multiphase machines and power electronics
Author: Subotić, Ivan
ISNI:       0000 0004 5992 999X
Awarding Body: Liverpool John Moores University
Current Institution: Liverpool John Moores University
Date of Award: 2015
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The concept of integration of an electric vehicle (EV) drivetrain’s components into the charging process is not novel. It has been considered over the years in both industry and academia, which resulted in a number of published papers and patents in this area. Possibilities of charging from single-phase and three-phase mains were both considered. In the former group the charging power rating cannot exceed the limit set by the single-phase mains. Therefore, the topologies are characterised with low charging powers, leading to a long duration of the charging process. Although the topologies supplied form three-phase mains are capable of achieving fast charging, they were considered to a much lesser extent. The main reason is the undesirable torque production in machines integrated into the charging process during the battery charging, which is unavoidable when a three-phase machine of either synchronous or induction type is used. The thesis investigates integrated on-board battery chargers for electric vehicles (EVs) based on multiphase machines and multiphase power electronics. At present, EVs rely on three-phase systems for machine propulsion. However, recent advances in multiphase drive technology have firmly established their potential advantages over their three-phase counterparts for this application. One of the most notable features of multiphase drive systems is their excellent fault tolerance, which is highly desirable in EVs since it enables realisation of the requirement for “limp-home” operation in the propulsion mode, in case of a fault. The thesis demonstrates that multiphase drives have an additional major advantage over three-phase systems in vehicular applications, which is related to the aspect of battery charging. It shows a clear superiority of multiphase over three-phase systems in designing integrated charging topologies for EVs. In order to support the statement, the thesis provides a multitude of novel charging solutions that incorporate multiphase machines and multiphase power electronics into the charging process. The developed solutions could contribute to achieve significantly faster and cost-free (or at a minimum additional cost) on-board chargers in the near future. The thesis demonstrates how additional degrees of freedom that exist in multiphase systems can be conveniently utilised to achieve torque-free charging operation. Therefore, although three-phase currents flow through machines’ stator windings, they are not capable of producing a torque; thus the machines do not have to be mechanically locked. The principal advantage is that either very few or no new elements are required in order to realise the charging process. Thus savings are made with regard to cost and weight, and available spare space in the vehicle is increased. The novel integrated charging solutions, developed in the thesis, are based on primarily five-phase, asymmetrical and symmetrical six-phase, and asymmetrical and symmetrical nine-phase systems. Solutions with other phase numbers are also considered. Thus, in essence, all the possible phase numbers are encompassed by the research and the solutions are valid for both induction and synchronous machines. A common attribute of all discussed topologies is that they do not require a charger as a separate device since the charging function is performed by the drivetrain elements, predominantly a multiphase machine and an inverter. Further, each topology is capable of operating in both charging and vehicle-to-grid (V2G) mode. Three types of voltage sources are considered as a power supply for the charging process, namely single-phase, three-phase, and multiphase. For each supply type, and each phase number, viability of torque-free charging operation is theoretically assessed. Mathematical models of multiphase rectifiers are developed. For each topology equivalent scheme in the charging/V2G mode of operation is constructed. A control scheme, which aims at achieving unity power factor operation and complete suppression of the low order grid current harmonics, is designed for each solution. Finally, the validity of theoretical considerations and control algorithms for the developed solutions is experimentally assessed in charging, V2G, and propulsion mode of operation. Experimental performances of all discussed topologies are compared, and advantages and shortcomings of each solution are identified and discussed.
Supervisor: Levi, E. ; Jones, M. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: TK Electrical engineering. Electronics. Nuclear engineering