HVDC converters - Voltage and Power Flow Control Notes | EduRev

: HVDC converters - Voltage and Power Flow Control Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


Module 4 : Voltage and Power Flow Control
Lecture 18a : HVDC converters
  Objectives
   In this lecture you will learn the following
AC-DC Converters used for HVDC applications.
 
 
Introduction to Voltage Source Converters.
Thyristors
In the previous lecture, we have introduced the use of controlled rectifiers (AC-DC converters) to provide
controllable field voltage to a synchronous generator. In the following lecture we shall consider their use again as a
part of of HVDC systems.
Therefore in this lecture, we revise the operation of a typical AC-DC converter used in these applications. The
treatment given in this lecture is not exhaustive, but is given to bring out some important functional characteristics
of these converters which are important from a power systems perspective. A reader is encouraged to read a power
electronics text for a rigorous analysis of AC-DC converters.
Power Electronic controllers are now very widespread and are present in computers and satellite power supplies,
drives used in traction etc. Their use in extremely high power applications is not so well known. In fact, in many
HVDC links, the total power handled ("converted") by a power electronic converter system exceeds 1 GW !
Power Electronic converters use semiconductor devices which are operated in " ON " and "OFF" states. In ON state,
the voltage across the device is negligible, while in an OFF state, current flow through it is negligible. The state of a
device is decided by the external circuit conditions and a (a low power) signal which is provided at the GATE
terminal of the device. Diodes do not have a GATE terminal and their state is wholly determined by the external
circuit (forward or reverse bias).
Currently, most power electronic converters used in power system applications, like HVDC, use a device known as a
thyristor. Thyristors are available at ratings in excess of 10 kV, 8000 A. Many thyristors can be connected in series
to yield larger equivalent voltage ratings which are required for power system applications.
An IDEAL thyristor has the following characteristics:
1. A thyristor turns ON if VAK > 0 (forward bias) and ig >0
(firing).
2. Once a thyristor is ON, it remains ON even if ig becomes 0.
3. A thyristor which is ON, switches OFF if iAK falls to 0.
A practical device has the following limitations:
1. A thyristor requires some time to turn on  after the
application of the gating signal, known as turn on time, ton.
This is usually quite small.
2. Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for 
a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal !
3. A thyristor should be protected against high diAK/dt and
dvAK/dt otherwise it may damage the device.
Page 2


Module 4 : Voltage and Power Flow Control
Lecture 18a : HVDC converters
  Objectives
   In this lecture you will learn the following
AC-DC Converters used for HVDC applications.
 
 
Introduction to Voltage Source Converters.
Thyristors
In the previous lecture, we have introduced the use of controlled rectifiers (AC-DC converters) to provide
controllable field voltage to a synchronous generator. In the following lecture we shall consider their use again as a
part of of HVDC systems.
Therefore in this lecture, we revise the operation of a typical AC-DC converter used in these applications. The
treatment given in this lecture is not exhaustive, but is given to bring out some important functional characteristics
of these converters which are important from a power systems perspective. A reader is encouraged to read a power
electronics text for a rigorous analysis of AC-DC converters.
Power Electronic controllers are now very widespread and are present in computers and satellite power supplies,
drives used in traction etc. Their use in extremely high power applications is not so well known. In fact, in many
HVDC links, the total power handled ("converted") by a power electronic converter system exceeds 1 GW !
Power Electronic converters use semiconductor devices which are operated in " ON " and "OFF" states. In ON state,
the voltage across the device is negligible, while in an OFF state, current flow through it is negligible. The state of a
device is decided by the external circuit conditions and a (a low power) signal which is provided at the GATE
terminal of the device. Diodes do not have a GATE terminal and their state is wholly determined by the external
circuit (forward or reverse bias).
Currently, most power electronic converters used in power system applications, like HVDC, use a device known as a
thyristor. Thyristors are available at ratings in excess of 10 kV, 8000 A. Many thyristors can be connected in series
to yield larger equivalent voltage ratings which are required for power system applications.
An IDEAL thyristor has the following characteristics:
1. A thyristor turns ON if VAK > 0 (forward bias) and ig >0
(firing).
2. Once a thyristor is ON, it remains ON even if ig becomes 0.
3. A thyristor which is ON, switches OFF if iAK falls to 0.
A practical device has the following limitations:
1. A thyristor requires some time to turn on  after the
application of the gating signal, known as turn on time, ton.
This is usually quite small.
2. Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for 
a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal !
3. A thyristor should be protected against high diAK/dt and
dvAK/dt otherwise it may damage the device.
AC-DC converter control
Now suppose the thyristors are not fired as soon as they are forward biased, but fired after some delay.
Let us define delay angle for thyristor T1 as the angular delay from the point at which Vac becomes greater than zero.
Similarly the delay angle for the thyristors T2, T3..T6 is defined by the angular delay from the points at which Vbc, Vba,
... Vab become greater than zero respectively.
If all the thyristors are fired at a delay angle (a) of zero, then we get the waveforms as shown in the previous page.
However, if we fire all thyristors at a delay angle of 30° we get the waveform shown below.
Similarly the waveforms for a = 90° and 150° are also shown.
a = 30° a = 90° a = 150°
Page 3


Module 4 : Voltage and Power Flow Control
Lecture 18a : HVDC converters
  Objectives
   In this lecture you will learn the following
AC-DC Converters used for HVDC applications.
 
 
Introduction to Voltage Source Converters.
Thyristors
In the previous lecture, we have introduced the use of controlled rectifiers (AC-DC converters) to provide
controllable field voltage to a synchronous generator. In the following lecture we shall consider their use again as a
part of of HVDC systems.
Therefore in this lecture, we revise the operation of a typical AC-DC converter used in these applications. The
treatment given in this lecture is not exhaustive, but is given to bring out some important functional characteristics
of these converters which are important from a power systems perspective. A reader is encouraged to read a power
electronics text for a rigorous analysis of AC-DC converters.
Power Electronic controllers are now very widespread and are present in computers and satellite power supplies,
drives used in traction etc. Their use in extremely high power applications is not so well known. In fact, in many
HVDC links, the total power handled ("converted") by a power electronic converter system exceeds 1 GW !
Power Electronic converters use semiconductor devices which are operated in " ON " and "OFF" states. In ON state,
the voltage across the device is negligible, while in an OFF state, current flow through it is negligible. The state of a
device is decided by the external circuit conditions and a (a low power) signal which is provided at the GATE
terminal of the device. Diodes do not have a GATE terminal and their state is wholly determined by the external
circuit (forward or reverse bias).
Currently, most power electronic converters used in power system applications, like HVDC, use a device known as a
thyristor. Thyristors are available at ratings in excess of 10 kV, 8000 A. Many thyristors can be connected in series
to yield larger equivalent voltage ratings which are required for power system applications.
An IDEAL thyristor has the following characteristics:
1. A thyristor turns ON if VAK > 0 (forward bias) and ig >0
(firing).
2. Once a thyristor is ON, it remains ON even if ig becomes 0.
3. A thyristor which is ON, switches OFF if iAK falls to 0.
A practical device has the following limitations:
1. A thyristor requires some time to turn on  after the
application of the gating signal, known as turn on time, ton.
This is usually quite small.
2. Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for 
a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal !
3. A thyristor should be protected against high diAK/dt and
dvAK/dt otherwise it may damage the device.
AC-DC converter control
Now suppose the thyristors are not fired as soon as they are forward biased, but fired after some delay.
Let us define delay angle for thyristor T1 as the angular delay from the point at which Vac becomes greater than zero.
Similarly the delay angle for the thyristors T2, T3..T6 is defined by the angular delay from the points at which Vbc, Vba,
... Vab become greater than zero respectively.
If all the thyristors are fired at a delay angle (a) of zero, then we get the waveforms as shown in the previous page.
However, if we fire all thyristors at a delay angle of 30° we get the waveform shown below.
Similarly the waveforms for a = 90° and 150° are also shown.
a = 30° a = 90° a = 150°
                                                                                               (click on images to enlarge)
Recall that for a thyristor:
" Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for  a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal ! "
Therefore if the margin is less than the turn off time, then a thyristor will turn on again unintentionally, i.e., without a
firing gate signal (commutation failure). This is generally avoided as it disturbs the current and voltages in an
unacceptable way. So an important condition for inverter operation is that a should not be too close to 180°.
Some other important issues:
1. Harmonics: Both AC side currents and DC side voltages have harmonics (what are the lowest order harmonics for these
two quantities ?). Filters are usually necessary on AC and DC side to reduce harmonics.
2. Reactive power: For reactive power drawal from AC side to be low, it is necessary to have a close to 0° for a rectifier
and close (not too close) to 180° for an inverter.
HVDC link
In the previous page we have seen that a converter may be operated either as a rectifier or an inverter. For
inverters, power is taken from the dc side and given to the AC side. Inversion occurs if Vdc becomes negative (note:
current cannot become negative on the dc side since thyristors do not allow reverse conduction).
Vdc can be made negative if delay angle is > 90° and current is continuous -- it should not touch zero. The current
can be kept continuous if dc source voltage Vi is more negative than the average negative value of Vdc (see previous
page).
Let us represent a line commutated AC-DC converter as shown below:
Page 4


Module 4 : Voltage and Power Flow Control
Lecture 18a : HVDC converters
  Objectives
   In this lecture you will learn the following
AC-DC Converters used for HVDC applications.
 
 
Introduction to Voltage Source Converters.
Thyristors
In the previous lecture, we have introduced the use of controlled rectifiers (AC-DC converters) to provide
controllable field voltage to a synchronous generator. In the following lecture we shall consider their use again as a
part of of HVDC systems.
Therefore in this lecture, we revise the operation of a typical AC-DC converter used in these applications. The
treatment given in this lecture is not exhaustive, but is given to bring out some important functional characteristics
of these converters which are important from a power systems perspective. A reader is encouraged to read a power
electronics text for a rigorous analysis of AC-DC converters.
Power Electronic controllers are now very widespread and are present in computers and satellite power supplies,
drives used in traction etc. Their use in extremely high power applications is not so well known. In fact, in many
HVDC links, the total power handled ("converted") by a power electronic converter system exceeds 1 GW !
Power Electronic converters use semiconductor devices which are operated in " ON " and "OFF" states. In ON state,
the voltage across the device is negligible, while in an OFF state, current flow through it is negligible. The state of a
device is decided by the external circuit conditions and a (a low power) signal which is provided at the GATE
terminal of the device. Diodes do not have a GATE terminal and their state is wholly determined by the external
circuit (forward or reverse bias).
Currently, most power electronic converters used in power system applications, like HVDC, use a device known as a
thyristor. Thyristors are available at ratings in excess of 10 kV, 8000 A. Many thyristors can be connected in series
to yield larger equivalent voltage ratings which are required for power system applications.
An IDEAL thyristor has the following characteristics:
1. A thyristor turns ON if VAK > 0 (forward bias) and ig >0
(firing).
2. Once a thyristor is ON, it remains ON even if ig becomes 0.
3. A thyristor which is ON, switches OFF if iAK falls to 0.
A practical device has the following limitations:
1. A thyristor requires some time to turn on  after the
application of the gating signal, known as turn on time, ton.
This is usually quite small.
2. Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for 
a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal !
3. A thyristor should be protected against high diAK/dt and
dvAK/dt otherwise it may damage the device.
AC-DC converter control
Now suppose the thyristors are not fired as soon as they are forward biased, but fired after some delay.
Let us define delay angle for thyristor T1 as the angular delay from the point at which Vac becomes greater than zero.
Similarly the delay angle for the thyristors T2, T3..T6 is defined by the angular delay from the points at which Vbc, Vba,
... Vab become greater than zero respectively.
If all the thyristors are fired at a delay angle (a) of zero, then we get the waveforms as shown in the previous page.
However, if we fire all thyristors at a delay angle of 30° we get the waveform shown below.
Similarly the waveforms for a = 90° and 150° are also shown.
a = 30° a = 90° a = 150°
                                                                                               (click on images to enlarge)
Recall that for a thyristor:
" Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for  a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal ! "
Therefore if the margin is less than the turn off time, then a thyristor will turn on again unintentionally, i.e., without a
firing gate signal (commutation failure). This is generally avoided as it disturbs the current and voltages in an
unacceptable way. So an important condition for inverter operation is that a should not be too close to 180°.
Some other important issues:
1. Harmonics: Both AC side currents and DC side voltages have harmonics (what are the lowest order harmonics for these
two quantities ?). Filters are usually necessary on AC and DC side to reduce harmonics.
2. Reactive power: For reactive power drawal from AC side to be low, it is necessary to have a close to 0° for a rectifier
and close (not too close) to 180° for an inverter.
HVDC link
In the previous page we have seen that a converter may be operated either as a rectifier or an inverter. For
inverters, power is taken from the dc side and given to the AC side. Inversion occurs if Vdc becomes negative (note:
current cannot become negative on the dc side since thyristors do not allow reverse conduction).
Vdc can be made negative if delay angle is > 90° and current is continuous -- it should not touch zero. The current
can be kept continuous if dc source voltage Vi is more negative than the average negative value of Vdc (see previous
page).
Let us represent a line commutated AC-DC converter as shown below:
An HVDC link consists of a rectifier
and inverter connected together as
shown in the figures on the right.
Power flows from the rectifier to the
inverter and is in effect transferred
from the rectifier AC side to the
inverter AC side. The rectifier voltage
VdcR plays the "role" of the dc
source, Vi, required for inverter
operation as discussed above.
 
The magnitude of the inverter and
rectifier voltages is determined by
the firing angle. Current (or power)
can be changed by changing the
magnitude of either or both voltages.
However, since they are constraints
on the maximum value of delay
angles for inverter, so in practice
current is controlled by controlling
the rectifier dc voltage.
Since the magnitude of the dc side
voltages are dependent only on AC
side voltage magnitudes, delay
angles, power flow is NOT dependent
on AC side system frequency or
phase angle at either end.
 
 
Note : AC side voltages are a must for the operation of a line commutated converter bridge. If AC side voltages are
absent, the converter cannot be operated. This has significance in a power system: when the AC system voltages on
either side are zero (due to a black out), power cannot be transferred via this link.
Can reverse the direction of power flow in an HVDC link ? how ?
Page 5


Module 4 : Voltage and Power Flow Control
Lecture 18a : HVDC converters
  Objectives
   In this lecture you will learn the following
AC-DC Converters used for HVDC applications.
 
 
Introduction to Voltage Source Converters.
Thyristors
In the previous lecture, we have introduced the use of controlled rectifiers (AC-DC converters) to provide
controllable field voltage to a synchronous generator. In the following lecture we shall consider their use again as a
part of of HVDC systems.
Therefore in this lecture, we revise the operation of a typical AC-DC converter used in these applications. The
treatment given in this lecture is not exhaustive, but is given to bring out some important functional characteristics
of these converters which are important from a power systems perspective. A reader is encouraged to read a power
electronics text for a rigorous analysis of AC-DC converters.
Power Electronic controllers are now very widespread and are present in computers and satellite power supplies,
drives used in traction etc. Their use in extremely high power applications is not so well known. In fact, in many
HVDC links, the total power handled ("converted") by a power electronic converter system exceeds 1 GW !
Power Electronic converters use semiconductor devices which are operated in " ON " and "OFF" states. In ON state,
the voltage across the device is negligible, while in an OFF state, current flow through it is negligible. The state of a
device is decided by the external circuit conditions and a (a low power) signal which is provided at the GATE
terminal of the device. Diodes do not have a GATE terminal and their state is wholly determined by the external
circuit (forward or reverse bias).
Currently, most power electronic converters used in power system applications, like HVDC, use a device known as a
thyristor. Thyristors are available at ratings in excess of 10 kV, 8000 A. Many thyristors can be connected in series
to yield larger equivalent voltage ratings which are required for power system applications.
An IDEAL thyristor has the following characteristics:
1. A thyristor turns ON if VAK > 0 (forward bias) and ig >0
(firing).
2. Once a thyristor is ON, it remains ON even if ig becomes 0.
3. A thyristor which is ON, switches OFF if iAK falls to 0.
A practical device has the following limitations:
1. A thyristor requires some time to turn on  after the
application of the gating signal, known as turn on time, ton.
This is usually quite small.
2. Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for 
a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal !
3. A thyristor should be protected against high diAK/dt and
dvAK/dt otherwise it may damage the device.
AC-DC converter control
Now suppose the thyristors are not fired as soon as they are forward biased, but fired after some delay.
Let us define delay angle for thyristor T1 as the angular delay from the point at which Vac becomes greater than zero.
Similarly the delay angle for the thyristors T2, T3..T6 is defined by the angular delay from the points at which Vbc, Vba,
... Vab become greater than zero respectively.
If all the thyristors are fired at a delay angle (a) of zero, then we get the waveforms as shown in the previous page.
However, if we fire all thyristors at a delay angle of 30° we get the waveform shown below.
Similarly the waveforms for a = 90° and 150° are also shown.
a = 30° a = 90° a = 150°
                                                                                               (click on images to enlarge)
Recall that for a thyristor:
" Once iAK falls to 0,  positive VAK should not be applied for  a duration, toff (called turn off time), otherwise the thyristor
may turn on again even without application of a gate signal ! "
Therefore if the margin is less than the turn off time, then a thyristor will turn on again unintentionally, i.e., without a
firing gate signal (commutation failure). This is generally avoided as it disturbs the current and voltages in an
unacceptable way. So an important condition for inverter operation is that a should not be too close to 180°.
Some other important issues:
1. Harmonics: Both AC side currents and DC side voltages have harmonics (what are the lowest order harmonics for these
two quantities ?). Filters are usually necessary on AC and DC side to reduce harmonics.
2. Reactive power: For reactive power drawal from AC side to be low, it is necessary to have a close to 0° for a rectifier
and close (not too close) to 180° for an inverter.
HVDC link
In the previous page we have seen that a converter may be operated either as a rectifier or an inverter. For
inverters, power is taken from the dc side and given to the AC side. Inversion occurs if Vdc becomes negative (note:
current cannot become negative on the dc side since thyristors do not allow reverse conduction).
Vdc can be made negative if delay angle is > 90° and current is continuous -- it should not touch zero. The current
can be kept continuous if dc source voltage Vi is more negative than the average negative value of Vdc (see previous
page).
Let us represent a line commutated AC-DC converter as shown below:
An HVDC link consists of a rectifier
and inverter connected together as
shown in the figures on the right.
Power flows from the rectifier to the
inverter and is in effect transferred
from the rectifier AC side to the
inverter AC side. The rectifier voltage
VdcR plays the "role" of the dc
source, Vi, required for inverter
operation as discussed above.
 
The magnitude of the inverter and
rectifier voltages is determined by
the firing angle. Current (or power)
can be changed by changing the
magnitude of either or both voltages.
However, since they are constraints
on the maximum value of delay
angles for inverter, so in practice
current is controlled by controlling
the rectifier dc voltage.
Since the magnitude of the dc side
voltages are dependent only on AC
side voltage magnitudes, delay
angles, power flow is NOT dependent
on AC side system frequency or
phase angle at either end.
 
 
Note : AC side voltages are a must for the operation of a line commutated converter bridge. If AC side voltages are
absent, the converter cannot be operated. This has significance in a power system: when the AC system voltages on
either side are zero (due to a black out), power cannot be transferred via this link.
Can reverse the direction of power flow in an HVDC link ? how ?
AC-DC Voltage Source Converter: A brief introduction
The converter that we have studied is a "line commutated converter". The voltages required for commutation (turning
off a device and switching on another) are obtained from the AC side. On the other hand, a Voltage Source
Converter (VSC) uses a voltage source (or a capacitor whose voltage is maintained constant) on the DC side and
switches with turn off capability. These switches can be turned on or off at will, if the voltage on the dc side is
positive. The schematic of a single phase voltage source converter is shown below.
The voltage on the AC side is related to the DC side voltage depending on the switch positions:
s1 and s2 ON, s3 and s4 OFF : Vac = Vdc, idc = iac
s3 and s4 ON, s1 and s2 OFF : Vac = - Vdc, idc = - iac
s1 and s4 ON, s3 and s2 OFF : Vac = 0, idc = 0
s2 and s3 ON, s1 and s4 OFF : Vac = 0, idc = 0
However, two switches in a leg (e.g. s1 and s3 in the figure above) should not be turned on simultaneously (why ?)
The direction of current on the dc side can be bidirectional, although dc voltage has to be unidirectional. The switches
can be implemented using power electronic devices as shown below -- a device like a Gate Turn Off Thyristor (GTO) in
parallel with a reverse connected diode. Note that devices like Gate Turn Off Thyristors can be switched off by a gate
signal - a capability which an ordinary thyristor lacks. Devices like Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor also may be used
in a VSC instead GTOs.
 
If s1 & s2 and s3 & s4 are
switched alternately, then the
voltage on the ac side is a
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