AC Line connector Wih Wintermediate DC Link


Technology # 13-36


A Power Electronics Converter System

Conventional power electronics converter (PEI) equipment is bulky, heavyweight, and requires regular maintenance, particularly because of the electrolytic capacitor that is used in such systems. These characteristics mean that the conventional PEI’s are not well suited for many applications where compactness, light weight and excellent reliability are required. In ship design, a compact lightweight PEI that can be located on the deck of the ship is desirable, in aircraft systems, a light weight PEI is always required. Oil and gas well drilling platforms offshore, floating offshore wind farms, and future undersea drilling stations would greatly benefit from the advantages of an improved PEI design.



The proposed invention could be implemented in applications where size, reliability and weight are design parameters.

One possible scenario for this new topology is to deliver power for future offshore oil and gas subsea facilities from either inland power substations or offshore wind farms. in recent year* the oil and gas industry has shown interest in developing facilities on the seabed due to its multiple advantages compared to floating platforms. Less operating costs, low-risk operation, and a reduction of harsh weather conditions among others are the main advantages of these facilities. These underwater facilities will be located hundreds of kilometers from the shore and will require a deep sea electric distr[bution power system (DSEDS) for its operation. Deep in the sea, performance and reliability will be a challenge in order to keep the system running at all times. The proposed invention also can be implemented to connect off-shore and/or on-shore wind farms and inland substations or load centers.



* Less passive components: The MMC current and voltage output waveforms are nearly sinusoidal which mean that filters at the input of the MFwXFMR are not required. Furthermore, the IMC eliminates the use of the bulky electrolytic capacitor.

* Volume and weight reduction: The implementation of a MF-XFMR allows for compactness since the volume of the transformer is inversely proportional to the fundamental frequency. There is also a potential size reduction for the capacitor in each sub-module of the MMC because its size is inversely proportional to the frequency of the connected ac system.

* Fault current capability: For a half„bridge based MMC, the IMC in the sending-end and the receiving-end operates as a solid-state circuit breaker controlling and/or blocking dc fault currents. In the case of a Si IGBT„based IMC, 3.3kV devices can withstand 2 to 4X the nominal current for 5-1 Ous whereas lower voltage IGBTs can withstand 4 to IOX the nominal current durin the same time.



A new PEI topology has been invented that features fewer passive components, with no electrolytic capacitor. The new design is compact and lightweight when compared to conventional systems. A further advantage is an increased fault current capacity such that the new design can withstand from 2 to 10 times the nominal current for 5 to 10 micro seconds without failure. These features of the new PEI make it ideal for many current applications as well as future applications where the advantages of the new PEI design will be absolutely necessary.

For more in-depth information and the published patent application, see the following link:



The invention is patent pending and is available for license. 

For interested parties seeking further information, feel free to contact:


Mark Allen Lanoue

Technology Manager / Tech Ventures

University of Arkansas

(479) 575-7243


Patent Information:
App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Expire Date
Non-Provisional United States 14/558,439 9,685,878 12/2/2014 6/20/2017 6/15/2035
For Information, Contact:
Mark Lanoue
Technology Manager
University of Arkansas
Juan Balda
Andres Escobar Mejia
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