The modular multilevel converter (MMC) is one of the most potential converter topologies for medium/high power/voltage applications. One of the main technical challenges of an MMC is to eliminate/minimize the circulating currents within the legs. Circulating currents, if not properly controlled, increase the amplitude of capacitor voltage variations, rating values of the converter components and converter losses. This paper proposes a closed-loop circulating current control strategy for an MMC to specifically minimize the amplitude of capacitor voltage variations. The proposed strategy is based on adding an offset signal to the modulating signal of each arm. To minimize the amplitude of the capacitor voltage oscillations, an optimal circulating current component is determined and used as a reference signal for the current control of each MMC leg. Performance of the proposed control strategy is evaluated based on simulation studies in the MATLAB/Simulink environment. The reported study results demonstrate effectiveness of the proposed strategy to reduce the amplitude of the capacitor voltage oscillations.
CitationPicas, R. [et al.]. Minimization of the capacitor voltage fluctuations of a modular multilevel converter by circulating current control. A: IEEE International Conference on Industrial Electronics. "IEEE Industrial Electronics Conference (IECON’12), Montreal, Quebec, Canada, 25-28 Oct. 2012.". Montreal, Quebec: 2012, p. 1-7.
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