Jean Bélanger

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.

Control and Performance of a Modular Multilevel Converter System

Publication date : Aug 2011
Paper File : Control and Performance of a modular multilevel converter system.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Luc-André Gregoire, Wei Li,

Abstract

The Modular Multilevel Converter (MMC) system has many advantages over conventional voltage source converters and therefore can be used in dc power transmission, micro grid, or renewable energy applications. While MMC’s distinctive topology offers many new features, it also necessitates a sophisticated controller to deal with extra control requirements. This paper presents a control scheme with multiple control objectives required by MMC, i.e. active and reactive power control, dc voltage control, sub-module capacitor voltage control and balancing, circulating current eliminating, and zero-sequence current eliminating. The system is modeled in an electromagnetic transients program, RT-LAB, and its dynamic performance is evaluated by time-domain studies using a real-time simulator, eMEGAsim. The results show the multiple control objectives are fulfilled and the system has fast response to control command and system dynamics

Validation of a 60-Level Modular Multilevel Converter Model - Overview of Offline and Real- Time HIL Testing and Results

Publication date : Apr 2011
Paper File : Validation of a 60-Level Modular Multilevel.pdf



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Author(s)

Wei Li, Luc-André Gregoire, Laurence Snider, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

In this paper, full real-time digital simulation of a static modular multilevel converter (MMC) HVDC link interconnecting two AC networks is discussed. The converter has 60 cells per arm; each cell has two power switches with antiparallel diodes and one capacitor. The simulated model can be used to study the natural rectifying mode, which is very important in the energizing process of the converter, whether a ramping voltage or a charging resistance is used. The model also incorporates a simple controller to show the system behavior in different operating conditions. The converter model and the controller are simulated on two independent real-time simulators and connected though their respective IO and physical signal cables to perform Hardware-in-the-Loop testing. All capacitor voltages are supplied to the controller using digital to analog converters. Firing signals from the controller are sent using digital signals with opto-couplers, as would be the case with a real setup. By doing so, a Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) simulation is obtained. The main challenges of this setup are the very high number of IOs, which reaches over 730, considering both controller and converter, and the processing power required to simulate the 360 cells within a small time-step of 50 μs or less, as required for electromagnetic transient analysis. The simulation is achieved with a time-step of 20 μs using 10 INTEL 3.2-Ghz processor cores. Different faults are applied to determine their effects on the controller and the converter. In order to produce results that are as realistic as possible, a saturable transformer is used; the impact is particularly noticeable during faults and unbalanced load. The real-time digital simulator used is based on MATLAB, SIMULINK, SimPowerSystems and eMEGAsim.

A Combined State-Space Nodal Method for the Simulation of Power System Transients

Publication date : Apr 2011
Paper File : A Combined State-Space Nodal Method for the Simulation of Power System Transients.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Mahseredjian, Jean Bélanger, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

This paper presents a new solution method that combines state-space and nodal analysis for the simulation of electrical systems. The presented flexible clustering of state-space described electrical subsystems into a nodal method offers several advantages for the efficient solution of switched networks, nonlinear functions and for interfacing with nodal model equations. This paper extends the concept of discrete companion branch equivalent of the nodal approach to state-space described systems and enables natural coupling between them. The presented solution method is simultaneous and allows to benefit from the advantages of two different modeling approaches normally exclusive from one another.

Solvers for Real-Time Simulation of Bipolar Thyristor-Based HVDC and 180-cell HVDC Modular Multilevel Converter for System Interconnection and Distributed Energy Integration

Publication date : Feb 2011
Paper File : CiGRE_Recife2011_paperfinal.pdf



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Author(s)

Luc-André Gregoire, Jean Bélanger, Christian Dufour,

Abstract

Thyristors-based converters are still today the most common type of HVDC links. Modular Multilevel Converter based HVDC links are often considered for lower power rating projects like off-shore wind farms. Both approaches present challenges in both the design and the testing of proposed circuit topologies and control & protection system design. Conventional real-time simulators used by most power electronic system manufacturers for testing thyristor-based AC-DC converter systems in HIL mode encounter difficulties or simply cannot simulate MMC-based circuits composed very large number of fast power electronic devices. This paper will demonstrate new solvers methods adapted for both thyristors and MMC-based HVDC links. In the case of thyristors-based HVDC, a new solver called State-Space Nodal implements an efficient real-time method to deal with the numerous switched filter banks and valves groups found in these apparatus. The real-time and parallel simulation of Modular Multilevel Converters with hundreds of switches, which is very difficult or impossible with conventional solvers, is made with a pragmatic fixed-causality solver. System transients and dynamic performance under several operating conditions evaluated in HIL mode with a prototype controller-in-the-loop composed of several hundred of I/O connections will also be presented, using the RT-LAB real-time digital simulator.

Today’s Power System Simulation Challenge: High-performance, Scalable, Upgradable,Affordable COTS-Based Real-Time Digital Simulators

Publication date : Dec 2010
Paper File : India Conference 2011_LAG_final.pdf



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Author(s)

Luc-André Gregoire, Laurence A. Snider, Jean Bélanger, Girish Nanjundaiah,

Abstract

This paper describes today's power system simulation challenge. Simulator technology has evolved from physical/analogue simulators (HVDC simulators, TNA’s) for electromagnetic transients and protection and control studies, to hybrid TNA/Analogue/Digital simulators with the capability of studying electro-mechanical transient behaviour [1], to fully digital real-time simulators. Today’s global power system infrastructure is rapidly changing towards increasingly distributed generation/distribution systems, and this transformation mandates expanded use of power electronic devices: HVDC, FACTS and interfacing devices for dc and variable-frequency power sources (photovoltaic, wind generation).

The What, Where and Why of Real-Time Simulation

Publication date : Oct 2010
Paper File : PES-GM-Tutorial_04 - Real Time Simulation.pdf



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Author(s)

Philippe Venne, Jean-Nicolas Paquin, Jean Bélanger,

Abstract

Simulation tools have been widely used for the design and improvement of electrical systems since the midtwentieth century. The evolution of simulation tools has progressed in step with the evolution of computing technologies. In recent years, computing technologies have improved dramatically in performance and become widely available at a steadily decreasing cost. Consequently, simulation tools have also seen dramatic performance gains and steady cost decreases.Researchers and engineers now have access to affordable, high performance simulation tools that were previously too costprohibitive, except for the largest manufacturers and utilities. This paper introduces the role and advantages of using real-time simulation by answering three undamental questions: what is real-time simulation; why is it needed and where does it best fit.The recent evolution of real-time simulators is summarized. The importance of model validation, mixed use of real-time and offline modes of simulation and test coverage in complex systems is discussed.

Comparison between ARTEMIS 5th order Integration method used with the eMEGAsim Simulation Platform and the classical TUSTIN 2nd order method used in PSCAD and SimPowerSystems software

Publication date : Jul 2010
Paper File : TR10-30202-AR-1 eMEGAsim_vs_PSCAD_circuit_RLC_.pdf



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Author(s)

Jean Bélanger, Amine Yamane,

Abstract

Real-time simulation requires the use of fixed step integration methods, capable of achieving accuracy with a time step range larger than 10 μs to 100 μs, to enable the use of standard processors and IO systems. Simulation accuracy increases when the time step value decrease but the processing power and number of processors increase when the time step decreases. The choice of integration techniques is also important. Simulation specialists must therefore select the best integration technique and time step that will yield to acceptable results. This document provides a comparison between simulation results obtained by using a classical 2nd order Tustin integration solver (also known as the Trapezoidal method) and the ARTEMIS 5th Order integration Method). The TUSTIN 2nd order method uses two terms of the Taylor series of the exponential function, while ARTEMIS 5th order uses five terms. Tustin is used by conventional electrical simulation software using the nodal technique such as PSCAD and EMTP while SimPowerSystems and eMEGAsim use ARTEMIS 5th order method in addition to the TUSTIN method.

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