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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/L021579/1
Title: High Current Module and Technologies Optimised for HVDC
Principal Investigator: Palmer, Dr P
Other Investigators:
Mawby, Professor P Alatise, Dr O Udrea, Professor F
McMahon, Professor RA Finney, Professor SJ
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Alstom Group Amantys Ltd Dynex Semiconductor (CRRC Times UK)
Department: Engineering
Organisation: University of Cambridge
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 16 December 2014 Ends: 15 June 2019 Value (£): 1,016,809
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Sustainable Energy Networks
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Energy
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
28 Feb 2014 HVDC Challenge Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
The proposed research will investigate the role that advanced power semiconductor module design can play in improving the efficiency and increasing the capacity of Voltage Source, HVDC converters.

Growing use of HVDC for integration of renewable energy sources and transnational electricity transmission is driving development HVDC technologies. Within Europe there are over 20 HVDC schemes currently planned and under construction most of which will employ new IGBT based Voltage Source Converter (VSC) technology. The development of new multi-level converters greatly raised DC operating voltages in VSC converters and improved their performance.

Despite these significant advances, there are still strong drivers to raise both capacity and efficiency. To date multi-level HVDC typically utilises high voltage power semiconductor modules originally designed for other applications. At projected deployment rates, VSC-HVDC is likely to become one of the key markets for high voltage power. The size of this potential market justifies the development of a new power semiconductor switch, specifically designed around the needs of multi-level VSC converters. Such a power switch will be a composite of high capacity multi-device module and an associated intelligent gate drive which can optimise module performance in multi-level VSC systems. It is proposed that such techniques can provide significant gains in both converter capacities and efficiency at a reduced cost.

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Organisation Website: http://www.cam.ac.uk