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Reference Number EP/M506874/1
Title Design, build and testing of a 50 kVA SiC BJT inverter as a building block for high-power HVDC inverters
Status Completed
Energy Categories OTHER POWER and STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES(Electricity transmission and distribution) 100%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr RA McMahon
No email address given
University of Cambridge
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 September 2014
End Date 31 May 2016
Duration 21 months
Total Grant Value £208,762
Industrial Sectors Energy
Region East of England
Programme Energy : Energy
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr RA McMahon , Engineering, University of Cambridge (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Professor F Udrea , Engineering, University of Cambridge (0.001%)
Web Site
Abstract This project is a collaboration between Zagres Limited and Cambridge University Engineering Department (CUED) andaims to study, prove and quantify the performance and economics of a newly developed Silicon Carbide Bipolar JunctionTransistor (SiC BJT) technology through building and testing a prototype 50 kVA SiC BJT inverter as a building block forHigh Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) transmission applications. The SiC BJT power module technology has voltage,frequency and thermal ratings substantially greater than existing Si-based modules, which can significantly reduce size andenhance reliability and efficiency of power electronics inverters. These benefits will contribute to reducing the cost ofenergy for offshore renewables.The 50 kVA SiC BJT inverter will be the first of its kind and will act as a stepping-stone to develop and industrialise largescaleHVDC SiC-based inverters. The performance and benefits of the inverter will be assessed and compared to existingcommercial Si-based solutions. In addition, a thorough business plan and exploitation model will be developed to supportthe follow-on commercialisation.This project aims to prove and quantify the benefits and economics of the SiC BJT technology, on both device andapplication levels, through the design and testing of a 50 kVA SiC BJT inverter as a building block for high-power HVDCinverters and design assessment of an ultra-high voltage 10 kV SiC BJT power device.According to TSB's Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, the offshore renewable industry contributed circa 1bn to the UKeconomy and supported 20,000 jobs in 2013. However, only 40% of the lifetime costs of currently operational UK offshorewind farms will be spent domestically, since most large-scale components are imported. This project supports theexploitation of a new HVDC technology, currently only supplied by non-UK suppliers, such as Siemens and ABB.Successful commercialisation of project outcomes will not onl reduce the LCOE from offshore renewables, but will also increase the UK content of the supply chain, hence bring economic benefits and create new jobs across the supply chain
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 29/10/14