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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 52, NO.

4, AUGUST 2005

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Flyback Inverter Controlled by Sensorless Current MPPT for Photovoltaic Power System
Nobuyuki Kasa, Member, IEEE, Takahiko Iida, and Liang Chen
AbstractThis paper presents a yback inverter controlled by sensorless current maximum power point tracking (MPPT) for a small photovoltaic (PV) power system. Although the proposed system has small output power such as 300 W, a few sets of small PV power systems can be easily connected in parallel to yield higher output power. When a PV power system is constructed with a number of small power systems, the total system cost will increase and will be a matter of concern. To overcome this difculty, this paper proposes a PV system that uses no expensive dc current sensor but utilizes the method of estimating the PV current from the PV voltage. The paper shows that the application of this novel sensorless current yback inverter to an MPPT-operated PV system exhibits satisfactory MPPT performance similar to the one exhibited by the system with a dc current sensor as well. This paper also deals with the design method and the operation of the unique yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding. Index TermsDigital signal processors, photovoltaic (PV) power systems, pulsewidth-modulated (PWM) inverters.

I. INTRODUCTION HOTOVOLTAIC (PV) systems have been developed to overcome an energy crisis in terms of ecology. The PV system consists of the PV array and the PV power conditioner, and the PV power conditioner usually can be subdivided into both a dcdc converter to control the dc voltage and a voltage-source inverter to connect to the ac utility grid line. Since a PV or a solar cell module can generate rather small electric power of approximately 100 W per unit square meter under ne weather conditions, the PV power conditioner adopts the maximum power point tracking (MPPT) technique to utilize the PV array efciently. The PV voltage and PV current are required to calculate the PV output power for the MPPT operation. Therefore, an expensive dc current sensor is absolutely required, thereby introducing the problem of high expense for the PV small power system. As listed in the literature [1][10], there are a number of main circuit congurations for the PV power conditioners suitable for a rating less than 1 kW, and we also had proposed a kind of buckboost-type inverter that had two sets of ac semiconductor switches to convert dc power to ac power [4]. However, this proposed inverter required two sets of the dc sources of PV arrays, which, respectively, supplied the positive and negative half-cycle current to the ac utility grid line. This proposed inverter circuit has been improved to one dc-source-type inverter as reported in the literature [11][13].
Manuscript received May 19, 2004; revised October 11, 2004. Abstract published on the Internet April 28, 2005. The authors are with the Department of Electronic Engineering, Okayama University of Science, Okayama 700-0005, Japan (e-mail: kasa@ee.ous.ac.jp). Digital Object Identier 10.1109/TIE.2005.851602

One of the improved main circuit congurations is named the yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding [13]. In this paper, the yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding is used to improve the operating performance of the newly proposed sensorless current yback inverter. The yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding is already presented in the literature [12][14]; however, since the method still does not have widespread familiarity, the features are summarized here as follows. No dcdc converter is required, as the yback inverter can directly convert the specied dc power to ac power, where the dc voltage is not related to the operation. The main circuit conguration becomes very simple and the number of power semiconductor switches used is less than that of a conventional one; these features contribute to the cost reduction of the total system. As the electric potential of the PV array can be xed at the ground potential, there is no possibility of any static capacity between the PV array and the ground to generate any troublesome discharge current. On the other hand, this discharge current becomes an inevitable one when the conventional bridge inverter circuit conguration is applied. The control algorithm is very simple and of open loop and is found to be equipped enough to run the PV power conditioner. The detailed design method of the yback inverter is discussed in Section II of this paper. For the MPPT operation, the PV voltage and the PV current are required to calculate the PV output power. Using a digital signal processor (DSP), the PV current is calculated from the voltage across the capacitor connected to the PV array. Section III treats in detail the algorithm for the calculation including the owchart. The experimental results show that the sensorless current system has a performance similar to that of a system with the current sensors. The details are provided in Section IV. II. FLYBACK INVERTER WITH CENTER-TAPPED SECONDARY WINDING A. Operation of Flyback Inverter With Center-Tapped Secondary Winding Fig. 1 shows the main circuit conguration of a prototyped PV power conditioner. The yback inverter consists of three insulated gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs), two diodes, and a yback transformer with center-tapped secondary winding. The yback transformer has the functions to not only generate the ac power but also to isolate between the PV array and the ac utility grid line to protect against any electric accident. The primary winding is connected to the PV array and IGBT1, where the DSP-driven IGBT1 has width-modulated gate pulses. Two

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 52, NO. 4, AUGUST 2005

Fig. 2.

Switching sequences.

Fig. 3.

Circuit conguration applying transformer model.

Fig. 1. Circuit conguration and operation modes of yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding.

same manner in the negative half cycles as it is controlled in the positive half cycles. B. Design of Inductance

sets of ac semiconductor switches, one composed of IGBT2 in series and another, IGBT3 and Diode in and Diode series, are, respectively, connected to each terminal of the secondary winding of the yback transformer. They can switch reciprocally and synchronously with the polarity of the ac utility grid line. The switching sequences and waveforms are shown in Fig. 2. Fig. 1 shows the operating modes of the yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding. Mode I is dened for the situation where IGBT1 is at on-state with all other IGBTs is discharged to the ac utility in off and the stored energy in synchronized with that of the grid line with the polarity of ac utility grid line. Mode II is dened for the duration where IGBT2 is at on-state with all the rest in off, implying the stored being released to the ac utility grid line and energies in and giving the positive polarity. Modes I and II are switched alternately at high switching frequency during the positive half cycle. The envelope of the peak current through the primary winding of the yback transformer is modulated by the pulsewidth modulated (PWM) gate pulse of IGBT1 to a sinusoidal form and is in phase with the ac utility grid line voltage. Mode III is for the negative half-cycle polarity. Mode I and III are switched alternately at high switching frequency during the negative half cycle. The current owing through IGBT1 is controlled in the

The strong effect of the winding inductances of the yback transformer on the performance of the inverter calls for a very careful design. In the following analysis, it is assumed that the transformer is an ideal one and has the equivalent magnetizing in the primary side as shown in Fig. 3. As inductance of the turns ratio between the primary and secondary winding of the yback transformer is only two, the mutual inductances beand secondary and also between primary tween primary and secondary become . Fig. 4(a) shows how the curows in the disconrent in the magnetizing inductance of tinuous current mode (DCM). is dened as the crest value when the inverter operates of the enveloped peak current in and the summation of and at the rated full power of is just equal to the duration at the crest point of the current. Here, is the ac utility grid line frequency and is the total number of the switching periods during the half cycle . Using these symbols as dened above, the and of IGBT1 can be expressed as (1) (2)

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C. Calculation of Switch-On Period As shown in Fig. 4(b), the enveloped peak current in the magduring the arbitrary th switching penetizing inductance riod is expressed as (6) where is the time from the starting point of the th switching period in seconds. Equation (6) can be written using the sine angle addition foris a small value, is approxmula. Therefore, as imated as

(7) As the yback inverter is operated in DCM, the IGBT is started from zero initial current at every switch current switching as shown in Fig. 4(b); the switch current during the th switching period is expressed as (8) is the threshold voltage of IGBT1, and is the where on-resistance of IGBT1. can be approximated as As is a small value, (9)
Fig. 4. Inductor current mode in DCM. (a) Waveforms of inductor current in L during half cycle of ac utility grid line. (b) Waveforms of switch current, inductor current in L , and capacitor voltage during the k th switching period.

and When the intersection of switch-on period, we obtain the pulsewidth switching pulse by solving from (7) and (9) as

is set to the of the th

(10) where is the root-mean-square value of ac utility grid line is the capacitor voltage of . Using (1) and (2), voltage and the is expressed as III. MAXIMUM POWER POINT TRACKING WITHOUT CURRENT SENSOR (3) On the other hand, the rated maximum output power is expressed as As the PV array has the nonlinear characteristics on the power versus voltage chart as shown in Fig. 5, the linear control theory cannot be applied to extract the maximum electric power from the PV array. The perturbation-and-observation method is often used for the MPPT in many PV systems [15], [16]. In this method, the periodically controlled increase or decrease of the PV voltage moves the operating points toward the maximum power point. Usually, the maximum point is tracked by varying the duty ratio of the switching device switched to its on-state. In the conventional system, it is required to calculate the PV output power, which is given by the product of the PV voltage and PV current. The PV current is usually detected by using an expensive dc current sensor and, therefore, demands an alternative means to achieve cost reduction in measuring the dc current. In this paper, it is proposed to calculate the PV current

(4)

where is given by . Substituting (4) into (3), the inductance is nally given by

(5)

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 52, NO. 4, AUGUST 2005

and are dened as the total amount of where and owing through electric charges stored in the capacitor , respectively. Fig. 4(b) the switch of IGBT1 during interval shows the capacitor voltage and the switch current waveforms and during the th switching period. When are dened as the capacitor voltages at the ends of the th and the th switching periods, respectively, the relation between these capacitor voltages and the electric charge is expressed as (16)
Fig. 5. PV characteristics.

The averaged capacitor current during the th switching period is given by (17) where is expressed as . The average capacitor current

(18) A it can be assumed that the switch current is composed of the magnetizing current in the yback transformer and the capacitor is so large that the uctuation of the capacitor voltage during the switching period can be neglected, then the switch current can be expressed as (19) (20) The relation between the electric charge and the switch current is expressed as (21) (12) is dened as the averaged current of in the interval , and the total amount of the electric charge which ows out from the PV array during the th switching period is and expressed as dened as (13) Finally, the average PV current In the same way (14) (24) can be estimated as From (15), the averaged switch current during the switching period is expressed as th

Fig. 6.

Equivalent circuit of yback inverter (primary side only).

from the PV voltage as described below by the aid of a digital signal processor (DSP) in real time. It is considered that the PV consists of the summation of the capacitor current current and the switch current as shown in Fig. 6 (11) When (11) is integrated in the interval period shown in Fig. 4(b), we get of the switching

(22) The average switch current is obtained as

(23)

(15)

KASA et al.: FLYBACK INVERTER CONTROLLED BY SENSORLESS CURRENT MPPT FOR PV POWER SYSTEM

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Fig. 7. Flowchart of interrupt routine for t

(k ) including I

calculation and MPPT.

Fig. 7 shows an outline of the owchart of the interrupt rouincluding the PV current estimation and MPPT. tine for The main program is not shown in Fig. 7. The examples of the parameters and their values listed below can be set in the main , program as their respective initial conditions: , , , , and , . Moreover, all pulsewidth data for the rated full-load condition are stored in the ROM table of the to . main program in the entries from The is reset to zero by the interrupt routine program which is started by the external interrupt signal at every zero-crossing electrical angle of the ac utility grid line voltage in order to synchronize the generated inverter voltage with the ac utility grid line voltage. This interrupt routine is repeated continuously at the repetition rate of 9.6 kHz after which is reset to is calculated by zero again. When is less than , (24). When coincides with , is renamed to . The repetitive frequency controller is used for smoothing of the output power. We make the repetitive frequency controller switch to the MPPT routine every six times of the interrupt Hz in routine, and so the repetitive frequency is our experimental system. The MPPT routine or the process of so-called perturbation-and-observation method is started and is calculated as

is given as the product of Then, the PV power and . is compared to the last PV power and the sign of is given by the process as shown in Fig. 7. is decided by the summation of Then, the new duty ratio the last duty ratio and the newly decided differentiation as expressed by (26) (27) and (28) is derived from the parallel I/O port of the The data of DSP board. As mentioned in Section I, it will be found that the control algorithm is open loop and a very simple one. IV. EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS Fig. 8 shows the experimental system conguration. Three PV modules with the electrical output rating of 109 W per module are used in our system. The DSP, type TMS320C31, is used to control the PV power conditioner and the MPPT pulsewidth calculation. The including the PV current and pulsewidth data are derived from the parallel I/O port of the DSP board and the data are delivered to the complex programmable logic device (CPLD) in order to generate the

where Each as is given by the product of

(25)

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 52, NO. 4, AUGUST 2005

Fig. 8. System conguration. TABLE I CIRCUIT PARAMETERS

PWM pulses. In the experimental system, the PV current is monitored by the dc current sensor and, thus, detected for the measurement. IGBT1 is driven by the switching frequency of 9.6 kHz. IGBT2 and IGBT3 are switched alternatively with some dead times, and these switches are synchronized to the ac utility grid line frequency of 60 Hz. The yback inverter is operated in DCM. The main circuit parameters are listed in Table I. , Fig. 9 shows the waveforms of the output voltage , and the switch current , when the the output current yback inverter generates the output power of 300 W. The P-SPICE simulation yields the waveforms given in Fig. 9(a). On the other hand, the experiment mentioned above exhibits the waveforms given in Fig. 9(b). It is found that these waveforms are in good agreement with each other and also that the prototyped yback inverter can operate at a power factor of almost unity. Fig. 10 shows how the efciency and input power depend on the duty ratio , where the input power corresponds to the PV output power. The inductance and maximum pulsewidth of IGBT1 are designed for the prototyped yback inverter so as to generate a maximum power of 300 W. It is found that the inverter has the efciency of approximately 89% at the rated output power, and the transformer and IGBT1 are responsible for most of the power loss. In order to verify the calculated current from (24), the dc current sensor is tentatively connected between the capacitor and PV array shown in Fig. 8. The measured and calculated currents are compared with each other as shown in Fig. 11. The

Fig. 9. Output voltage and current and switch current waveforms. (a) Simulation results. (b) Experimental results.

Fig. 10. Efciency and input power of yback inverter with center-tapped secondary windings.

measured upper waveform in Fig. 11(a) is the current of by the dc current sensor, while the lower one is the one calculated by (24). It is observed that transient phenomena occurs in the switch-on interval caused by the inrush current in capacitor , since capacitor is not pre-charged in the switch-off interval. Comparing these curves reveals the fact that both curves are similar to each other. However, it is also observed that there are some delays on the lower waveform caused by the sampling

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Fig. 12. Comparison of MPPT performance. (a) With current sensor. (b) Without current sensor.

Fig. 11. Comparison of estimated PV current and measured one. (a) Waveforms of PV current. (b) Proportional relations of PV currents.

period of the processor program. The rated PV current is 3 A and it is scaled in 8 bit, when the current is measured through the dc current sensor and the A/D converter in our system. Then, the resolution of the current is 0.012 A. Fig. 11(b) shows the experimental results which compare the estimated PV current calculated by (24) with the measured PV current. Since an estimate error of the PV current is within 0.012 A, proportional relations between the estimated current and the measured one are kept as shown in this gure. Fig. 12 shows the experimental results of the MPPT performance. At the time of experiment, it is a ne weather day and the solar intensity is 807 W/m . We can estimate roughly that the maximum power is 242 W, because the rated power is 300 W when the solar intensity is 1000 W/m as shown in Fig. 5.

To obtain the maximum power, the duty ratio must be approximately 0.9 which is obtained from Fig. 10. The PV generates the , when the power of 40 W at the initial conditions of MPPT route in Fig. 7 is not operated. The MPPT operation of the PV power conditioner is started at time 0. Since the repetitive is 0.01, we can estimate frequency of MPPT is 10 Hz and that the time interval until arriving at the maximum power is approximately 6 s. It is observed from Fig. 12 that the PV power conditioner can track the maximum power of 242 W after 6.3 s from the start of MPPT operation. Fig. 12(a) shows the MPPT performance with the dc current sensor, which means that the is used in the interrupt routine program shown measured in Fig. 7. On the other hand, Fig. 12(b) shows the MPPT performance without the dc current sensor, which means that the calculated by (24) is used in the interrupt routine program. Similar performance in the two cases proves the fact that the proposed current-sensorless method can track the maximum power point with the same efciency as the conventional MPPT method can with the current sensor. V. CONCLUSION A sensorless current yback inverter has been proposed, which can be applied to a PV system guided by MPPT operation. To verify the operation of the sensorless current yback inverter, a prototype yback inverter with center-tapped secondary winding is used. However, the novel sensorless method can be applied to any type of yback inverter with xed switching frequency and DCM operation. The comparison of the tests by the yback inverters with the dc current sensor and without it prove that there is no operational difference between them, including the MPPT performance. The novel sensorless

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method can contribute to the space saving and cost reduction of the PV power conditioner from both the theoretical and experimental points of views. The experimental data show that the sensorless current yback inverter can be applied to MPPT for the PV small power system with successful performance. ACKNOWLEDGMENT The authors would like to thank R. Yamada of Shindengen Electric Manufacturing Company, Ltd., Japan, for his help in this study. REFERENCES
[1] M. Nagao, H. Horikawa, and K. Harada, Photovoltaic system using buck-boost PWM inverter, Trans. Inst. Elect. Eng. Jpn., vol. 114-D, pp. 885892, 1994. [2] S. Saha and V. P. Sundarsingh, Novel grid-connected photovoltaic inverter, Proc. IEEGeneration, Transmission, Distrib., vol. 143, no. 2, pp. 497502, 1996. [3] M. Nagao and K. Harada, Power ow of photovoltaic system using buck-boost PWM power inverters, in Proc. PEDS96, May 1996, pp. 114149. [4] T. Iida and S. Matsui, A research and development of SMR-type inverter (in Japanese), in Proc. Joint Conf. Cyugoku Chapters of Electrical Societies 1997, Oct. 1997, p. 129. [5] N. Kasa and T. Iida, A transformer-less single phase inverter using a buck-boost type chopper circuit for photovoltaic power system, in Proc. ICPE98, Seoul, Korea, Oct. 1998, pp. 978981. [6] N. Kasa, T. Iida, and H. Iwamoto, An inverter using buck-boost type chopper circuits for popular small-scale photovoltaic power system, in Proc. IEEE IECON99, vol. 1, San Jose, CA, Nov. 1999, pp. 185190. [7] , Maximum power point tracking with capacitor identier for photovoltaic power system, Proc. IEEElectr. Power Appl., vol. 147, no. 6, pp. 497502, 2000. [8] T. Shimizu, N. Nakamura, and K. Wada, A novel yback-type utility interactive inverter for AC module systems, in Proc. ICPE01, Seoul, Korea, Oct. 2001, pp. 518522. [9] N. Kasa, T. Iida, and G. Majumdar, Maximum power point tracking without current sensor for small scale photovoltaic power system, in Proc. ICPE01, Seoul, Korea, Oct. 2001, pp. 631634. [10] Y. Konishi, S. Chandhaket, K. Ogura, and M. Nakaoka, Utility-interactive modulated sinewave inverter with a high frequency yback transformer link for small-scale solar photovoltaic generator, in Proc. ICPE01, Seoul, Korea, Oct. 2001, pp. 683686. [11] R. Yamada, N. Kasa, and T. Iida, Photovoltaic systems with yback type inverter (in Japanese), presented at the Joint Conf. Cyugoku Chapters of Electrical Societies 2001, Hiroshima, Japan, Oct. 20, 2001, Paper 150507. [12] N. Kasa and T. Iida, A yback type inverter for small scale wind power generation system, (in Japanese), Dept. Electron. Eng., Okayama Univ. Science, Okayama, Japan, Tech. Rep. SPC-02-16, Feb. 2nd, 2002. , Photovoltaic systems with yback type inverter (in Japanese), [13] J. Jpn. Soc. Power Electron., vol. 27, pp. 187192, Mar. 2002. [14] T. Shimizu, K. Wada, and N. Nakamura, A yback-type single phase utility interactive inverter with low-frequency ripple current regulation on the DC input for an AC photovoltaic module system, in Proc. IEEE PESC02, vol. 3, Jun. 2327, 2002, pp. 14831488.

[15] B. Bose, P. Szczesny, and R. Steigerwald, Microcomputer control of a residential photovoltaic power conditioning system, IEEE Trans. Ind. Appl., vol. 21, no. 5, pp. 11821191, Sep./Oct. 1985. [16] C. Hua, J. Lin, and C. Chen, Implementation of a DSP-controlled photovoltaic system with peak power tracking, IEEE Trans. Ind. Electron., vol. 45, no. 1, pp. 99107, Feb. 1998.

Nobuyuki Kasa (S96M98) was born in Japan in 1969. He received the B.E., M.E., and Ph.D. degrees in electronic engineering from Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan, in 1993, 1995, and 1998, respectively. In 1998, he joined the Department of Electronic Engineering, Okayama University of Science, Okayama, Japan, where he is currently an Assistant Professor. He was a Visiting Research Scholar in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Victoria, Canada, in 2003. His research interests include ac motor drive systems and photovoltaic power systems. Dr. Kasa received the Excellent Paper Presentation Award from the Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan in 1999.

Takahiko Iida was born in Japan in 1939. He received the Bachelor of Engineering degree from Kobe University, Kobe, Japan, in 1961, and the Doctoral degree from Osaka University, Osaka, Japan, in 1982. He was with Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (MELCO), Japan, from 1961 to 1989. In 1989, he joined Okayama University of Science, Okayama, Japan, where he is currently a Professor in the Department of Electronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering. Prof. Iida has been an International Member of IEC/SC47D since 1996. He is also Chairman of the Domestic Semiconductor Package Technical Committee. He received the Technical Prize from the Japan Electric Industry in 1975, the Invention Encouragement Prize from the Japan Invention Association in 1975, and the Committee Prize Paper Award from the IEEE Industry Applications Society in 1995.

Liang Chen was born in Xin Jiang, China, in 1968. He received the B.S degree from XiAn Mining College, XiAn, China. He is currently working toward the Ph.D. degree at Okayama University of Science, Okayama, Japan. He is also with the Department of Electrical Engineering, Xin Jiang University, Xin Jiang, China, where his research interests include photovoltaic power systems.