Jean Bélanger

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.

Real-time Electromagnetic and Transient Stability Simulations for Active Distribution Networks

Publication date : Jul 2013
Paper File : IPST_2013 Vahid.pdf



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Author(s)

Vahid Jalili-Marandi, Fábio Jose Ayres, Christian Dufour, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

This paper presents the solutions of a real-time parallel-processing based simulator, eMEGAsim, to perform electromagnetic transient and transient stability simulations for distribution power networks. The electromagnetic transient simulation can be distributed into several processors without adding an artificial delay, and the transient stability simulation tool can model three-phase unbalance systems. The simulator provides a flexible environment to interface discrete-time and phasor domains to create a hybrid simulation.

A Survey of Smart Grid Research and Development Involving Real-Time Simulation Technology

Publication date : Apr 2013
Paper File : IEEESmartGrid_Portugues_FinalFinal.pdf



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Author(s)

Christian Dufour, Simone Araújo, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

This paper discusses the various aspects involving the research and development of smart grids. Discussed are applications going from large grid renewable integration, systems to micro-grids. Load scheduling and power balance, communications issues, understanding customer behavior, large area protection, 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.

FPGA-based Switched Reluctance Motor Drive and DC-DC Converter Models for High-Bandwidth HIL Real-Time Simulator

Publication date : Mar 2013
Paper File : EPE2013_FPGA Motor Drive.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Sébastien Cense, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

In this paper, we describe an FPGA implementation of a Switched Reluctance Motor Drive (SRM) and a DC-DC bidirectional boost converter targeted for Hardware-In-the Loop (HIL) testing of modern SRM controllers. These FPGA models allow the HIL simulation of SRM drive and boost converter with switching frequencies in the 50-100 kHz range because of the very high sampling rate of the FPGA. The models are also integrated into the RT-LAB real-time environment and directly linked with the simulator I/Os, providing ultra-low HIL gate-in-to-current-out latency, suitable for the testing of modern motor controllers.

Modeling and Control of a Full-Bridge Modular Multilevel STATCOM

Publication date : Feb 2012
Paper File : PES12_MMCSTATCOM.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Wei Li, Luc-André Gregoire,

Abstract

Due to its unique topology, the Modular Multilevel STATCOM has many advantages but requires a sophisticated controller and puts higher requirements on simulation tools. To simulate the STATCOM in real-time is preferable because it enables hardware-in-the-loop test of the system in various scenarios including extreme fault conditions, which cannot be tested on a real STATCOM. This paper presents a model of full-bridge sub-module which enables fast offline and real-time simulation of the STATCOM. A control scheme with a new SM capacitor voltage balancing method is also proposed in this paper. The model and the controller are investigated for different operating conditions. Implemented in a real-time simulator, the model can be simulated in real time at a time step of 20 µs, 131 times faster than its reference model. As demonstrated by the results, the proposed control scheme is effective and robust.

A Smart Distribution Grid Laboratory

Publication date : Nov 2011
Paper File : IECON2011_Smart_Distribution_Grid_Laboratory.pdf



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Author(s)

Wei Li, Toshifumi Ise, Takeiki Aizono, Jean Bélanger, Isao Iyoda, Christian Dufour, Amine Yamane,

Abstract

This paper details a Smart Grid Laboratory for the study of modern house distribution systems with multiple energy sources and energy regeneration capability. The laboratory is designed to perform real-time simulation of a realistic distribution system connected to multiple houses. In addition, a real house with typical appliances and power sources is connected to the eMEGAsim real-time simulator with a Power- Hardware-In-the-Loop (PHIL) interface. Such PHIL interface enables the simulation of a simulated plant and real devices at a connection point where actual energy is exchanged between the two parts. Because of the coupling delays and the bandwidth of the plant and real devices, the stability of such a PHIL connection is not guaranteed. This paper will have a special emphasis on the stability of such power-HIL simulation.

A Novel and Flexible Test Stand for Medium Voltage Drives Using a Hardware-in-loop (HIL) Simulator

Publication date : Nov 2011
Paper File : A Novel and Flexible Test Stand for Medium Voltage Drives Using a Hardware-in-loop (HIL) Simulator.pdf



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Author(s)

Weihua Wang, Jean Bélanger, Christian Dufour, Ata Douzdouzani,

Abstract

With increasing complexity of topology and control strategies in medium voltage (MV) drives, a digital hardware-in-loop (HIL) simulator exhibits great advantage over a traditional analog test stand in terms of cost and flexibility. However, a great effort for developing a proper solver, an optimized design of the hardware, firmware and fine-tuning of the model is required to maintain sufficient accuracy of the HIL test stand. This paper presents the novel solver and the system architecture used by the HIL-simulation-based test stand for medium voltage drives. Test results of the ACS 6000 drives are shown under various conditions, and compared with the measurement acquired from the field testing.

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