Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Leon Tolbert, Fred Wang, David Irick
Electric vehicles (EVs) adoption is growing due to environmental concerns, government subsidies, and cheaper battery packs. The main power electronics design challenges for next-generation EV power converters are power converter weight, volume, cost, and loss reduction. In conventional EVs, the traction boost and the onboard charger (OBC) have separate power modules, passives, and heat sinks. An integrated converter, combining and re-using some charging and powertrain components together, can reduce converter cost, volume, and weight. However, efficiency is often reduced to obtain the advantage of cost, volume, and weight reduction.An integrated converter topology is proposed to combine the functionality of the traction boost converter and isolated DC-DC converter of the OBC using a hybrid transformer where the same core is used for both converters. The reconfiguration between charging and traction operation is performed by the existing Battery Management System (BMS) contactors. The proposed converter is operated in both boost and dual active bridge (DAB) mode during traction operation. The loss mechanisms of the proposed integrated converter are modeled for different operating modes for design optimization. An aggregated drive cycle is considered for optimizing the integrated converter design parameters to reduce energy loss during traction operation, weight, and cost. By operating the integrated converter in DAB mode at light-load and boost mode at high-speed heavy-load, the traction efficiency is improved. An online mode transition algorithm is also developed to ensure stable output voltage and eliminate current oscillation during the mode transition. A high-power prototype is developed to verify the integrated converter functionality, validate the loss model, and demonstrate the online transition algorithm. An automated closed-loop controller is developed to implement the transition algorithm which can automatically make the transition between modes based on embedded efficiency mapping. The closed-loop control system also regulates the integrated converter output voltage to improve the overall traction efficiency of the integrated converter. Using the targeted design approach, the proposed integrated converter performs better in all three aspects including efficiency, weight, and cost than comparable discrete solutions for each converter.
Anwar, Saeed, "Integrated DC-DC Charger Powertrain Converter Design for Electric Vehicles Using Wide Bandgap Semiconductors. " PhD diss., University of Tennessee, 2020.