This paper proposes an enhanced modular multilevel converter as an alternative to the conventional half-bridge modular multilevel converter that employs a reduced number of medium-voltage cells, with the aim of improving waveforms quality in its AC and DC sides. Each enhanced modular multilevel converter arm consists of high-voltage and low-voltage chain-links. The enhanced modular multilevel converter uses the high-voltage chain-links based on medium-voltage half-bridge cells to synthesize the fundamental voltage using nearest level modulation. Although the low-voltage chain-links filter out the voltage harmonics from the voltage generated by the high-voltage chain-links, which are rough and stepped approximations of the fundamental voltage, the enhanced modular multilevel converter uses the nested multilevel concept to dramatically increase the number of voltage levels per phase compared to half-bridge modular multilevel converter. The aforementioned improvements are achieved at the cost of a small increase in semiconductor losses. Detailed simulations conducted in EMPT-RV and experimental results confirm the validity of the proposed converter.
- converter topology
- hybrid converter