Jean Bélanger

Power Electronics for renewable energy systems, transportation and industrial applications

Publication date : Aug 2014
Paper File : Not available yet

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Author(s)

Luc Andre Gregoire, Kamal Al-Haddad, Jean Bélanger, Handy Blanchette, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

Chapter 18: Real-time Simulation of Modular Multilevel Converters (MMCs) Real-time offers several advantages to speed up the development of new product. One of these advantages being the possibility to test and develop controllers when the hardware is not yet available. This is a serious advantage in the case of high-order multilevel converter, like modular multilevel converter (MMC) topology. Its physical size could raise serious issues for most laboratories, without even mentioning the cost to build such a complex structure. It can also be useful to analyze the interaction between several MMCs and conventional high-voltage DC (HVDC) systems installed on the same power grid. Furthermore, it can perform factory acceptance test of the control system before the installation in the field. Nowadays, real-time simulators are often used simply to accelerate simulations, which could take several hours for simulation runs of a few seconds with a power grid having tow or three converter stations using conventional single-processor simulation software. This chapter introduces bases of real-time simulation: its advatanges and its constraints. Using these bases, real simulation of an MMC will be undertaken. This topology is made of many identical cells connected in series. Its modularity makes it suitable for various applications from medium voltage in a drive system using only a few cells to a large HVDC transmission system containing a wide range of cells. Connecting many of these cells in series reduces the voltage level that each sustains, decreasing the price of each components, reducing the switching losses and smaller and smaller dV/dt at its AC bus, while producing a sinusoidal waveform with a very low total harmonic distortion (THD) eliminating the use of bulky reactive component filter.

Modular Multilevel Converter Model Implemented in FPGA for HIL Test of Industrial Controllers

Publication date : Aug 2014
Paper File : Modular Multilevel Converter Model Implemented in FPGA for HIL Test of Industrial Controllers.pdf



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Author(s)

Wei Li, Sisounthone Souvanlasy, Pierre-Yves Robert, Luc-André Gregoire, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

Since Modular Multilevel Converters (MMC) have a sophisticated control, the real time simulation platform becomes critical for hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) test of the actual controllers in various scenarios before commissioning. This paper presents a multi-rate real time simulator that is able to simulate electromagnetic transients of MMC systems and connect to industrial controllers through fiber optics and copper wires for HIL tests. The MMC is implemented in field-programmable gate array (FPGA) with a sub-μs time step and the rest of the power system is simulated in the central processing unit (CPU) with a time step of 10~50 μs. Input and output (I/O) drivers are implemented in the same FPGA for a fast-rate and low-latency communication. Each FPGA accommodates up to 1530 sub-modules (SM), and multiple FPGA connected to one simulator can simulate MMC with more SM and multi-MMC systems. The performance is demonstrated in a 1500-SM MMC study case.

eFPGAsim: A Versatile Motor Drive and Power Electronic Test System

Publication date : Jul 2014
Paper File : eFPGAsim OPAL RT Bodo Power June 2014.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Vincent Lapointe and Christian Dufour,

Abstract

This paper presents a versatile test gig for controlled systems and devices such as electric hybrid vehicles (HEV) and smart grid controllers. At the core of this Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) test systems are a sets of FPGA-based solvers and models that enables the testing of power electronic and motor drive systems with switching frequencies approaching 100 kHz. This HIL system, called eFPGAsim, is designed for fast design iteration process by allowing circuit and parameter modification with a unique FPGA bitstream. The system allows control engineers to validate production controllers in real-time using a virtual power systems and motor drives.

Review of state-of-the-art solver solutions for HIL simulation of power systems, power electronic and motor drives

Publication date : Oct 2013
Paper File : Review of state-of-the-art solver solutions for HIL simulation.pdf



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Author(s)

Vahid Jalili-Marandi, Sébastien Cense, Jean Bélanger, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

In this paper, we review state-of-the-art solvers and techniques applicable to HIL simulation of power systems, power electronics and motor drives. These methods can be distinguished by the applications as well as the computational hardware engines used. Industrially speaking, there are two main types of hardware used today to make HIL: multi-core CPUs and FPGAs. Other promising technologies like, GPU (and similar approaches such as Intel 100 cores ‘ Xeon phi’ co-processors), are also possible and rather similar to multi-CPU approach but not discussed in this paper .

Advanced Real-Time Simulation Tools for Distributed Energy Integration and Microgrid

Publication date : Jan 2014
Paper File : Not available yet

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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

Transmission and distribution systems are becoming increasingly complex due to the integration of renewable energy and high-performance control and special protection systems. Sophisticated tools are required to evaluate the performance and reliability of several fast local protection and control systems that interact with slower wide-area control and protection systems that increase performance and security, prior to deployment. In particular, these tools must allow the testing of actual protection and control systems hardware units by connecting them to high-fidelity simulations of power systems that integrate several validated protection and control systems. OPAL-RT will demonstrate how fast electromagnetic simulation tools, with reaction times smaller than one microsecond, can be integrated with transient dynamic simulation tools, using Phasor-mode simulation with time steps as large as 10 milliseconds, to analyze the complex dynamics of very large transmission and unbalanced distribution systems. The same hardware-in-the loop simulation technology can also be used to design and test new control and protection algorithms, as well to identify models of black box systems, to evaluate the global performance of modern power systems.

Custom-Coded Models in the State Space Nodal Solver of ARTEMiS

Publication date : Aug 2013
Paper File : Custom-Coded Models.pdf



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Author(s)

Christian Dufour, Hani Saad, Jean Mahseredjian, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

This paper explains the users’ custom model feature of the State-Space-Nodal (SSN) solver of ARTEMiS. Using this feature, users can interface directly with the SSN nodal solver their own discretized models. This can lead to great improvements in real-time performance with some models that exhibit many different operation modes and/or models having a high degree of internal redundancy. Direct discretized solver coding also enables the user to write custom stabilization code or to use different solvers coupled in the same nodal admittance matrix. On-Load Tap Changer (OLTC) transformer, Modular Multilevel Converter (MMC) and frequency dependent line models (modal and phase domain types) are given as examples.

Real-Time and Faster-Than-Real-Time Simulation of Modular Multilevel Converters using standard multi-core CPU and FPGA Chips

Publication date : Oct 2013
Paper File : Real-Time and Faster-Than-Real-Time Simulation of Modular Multilevel Converters using standard multi-core CPU and FPGA Chips.pdf



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Author(s)

WeiLi, Jean Bélanger, Can Wang,

Abstract

Modular Multilevel Converter (MMC) has many advantages for high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission and to integrate renewable energy to the main grid. Recently, there are several MMC projects being planning or in development over the world. However, due to the fact that the MMC has a large number of sub-modules (SMs) and a sophisticated controller, there are high demands on simulation tools to validate its design. A digital real-time simulator can simulate the MMC system quickly and accurately, and is able to validate the real MMC controller through hardware-in-the-loop tests. The challenges are to have an accurate and efficient MMC model so the simulator can solve the system with large number of MMC SMs in a very small time step, below 25 us. In this paper, two MMC models implemented in standard INTEL multi-core CPU and FPGA for a faster-than-real-time and real-time simulation platform are presented. The model performance and accuracy are studied through a back-to-back MMC HVDC system, and compared to a reference model made by SimPowerSystems blocks in Matlab. It is demonstrated that the both models have high fidelity and an MMC system with as high as 3000 SMs can be simulated in real time with a time step of 500 nanoseconds using FPGA chips.

Validation of eHS FPGA Reconfigurable Low-Latency Electric and Power Electronic Circuit Solver

Publication date : Oct 2013
Paper File : Validation of eHS FPGA Reconfigurable Low-Latency Electric and Power Electronic Circuit Solver.pdf



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Author(s)

Sébastien Cense, Pierre-Yves Robert, Jean Bélanger, Andy Yen, Amine Yamane,

Abstract

This paper discusses the validation process and example of power electronic circuits simulated with a general purpose solver implemented on FPGA chips. The ‘Electric Hardware Solver’ or eHS presented in this paper has the goal to facilitate the usage of FPGA for high-fidelity Hardware-In-the-Loop simulation with sub-microsecond time step by avoiding the difficulties associated with the coding of FPGA devices. Several examples, from very simple to more complex using one or several FPGA boards, are presented and results are compared with traditional simulation software such as SimPowerSystems and PLECS. It will be demonstrated that FPGA-based simulation is now accessible to control and simulation system specialists without requiring any FPGA programming skills. In fact, preparation of FPGA simulation requires only the use of PLECS or SimPowerSystems schematic user interface.

On the Use of Real-Time Simulation Technology in Smart Grid Research and Development

Publication date : Sep 2013
Paper File : IEEESmartGrid_ECCE2013_final3a.PDF



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

This paper discusses the various aspects involving the research and development of smart grids. Discussed are applications, from large grid renewable integration, WAMPAC systems to micro-grids. Load scheduling and power balance, communications issues, understanding customer behavior, large area protection and distribution control are only some aspects of the challenge of making power grids more robust, more intelligent. The potential complexity of such smart grids requires careful study and analysis before actual realization. This paper explains how such challenges are addressed using real-time simulation technologies in different laboratories around the world.

A Real-time Dynamic Simulation Tool for Transmission and Distribution Power Systems

Publication date : Jul 2013
Paper File : ePHASORsim_PES_2013.pdf



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Author(s)

Vahid Jalili-Marandi, Fábio Jose Ayres, Esmaeil Ghahremani, Jean Bélanger, Vincent Lapointe,

Abstract

ePHASORsim tool offers real-time dynamic simulations for transmission and distribution power systems. Applications such as contingency studies, testing control devices, operator training, and SCADA system tests are examples for employing this tool. This paper describes the hardware and software architecture of the ePHASORsim and its development. The accuracy of the tool has been evaluated in comparison to other commercial, but non-real-time, simulation packages for both transmission and distribution systems. Its real-time performance has been tested with a time-step of 10ms on a real-time simulator for large-scale power systems in the order of 20000 buses, 5000 generators, and over 9000 control devices.

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