Onboard Power Systems



Addressing the Challenges of Onboard Power Systems Testing

Over the last decade, onboard power systems have advanced significantly due to the increased adoption of More Electrical Aircraft (MEA), All Electric Ships (AES) and electric high-speed rail within industry. By replacing certain mechanical, hydraulic and pneumatic functions with electric systems, engineers can now reduce costs, increase architectural flexibility and improve acoustics. While onboard power systems offer significant benefits, stringent regulations concerning reliability and survivability require more comprehensive control and protection testing. As a result, airplane, ship and train manufacturers and suppliers must spend more time designing, testing, validating and certifying this new generation of complex electrical systems.

Moreover, the implementation of newer electrical technologies within onboard power system designs promises to pose still greater challenges requiring, more efficient tools and processes for this emerging area.

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Ensuring the Reliability and Survivability of Shipboard Power Systems

Real-time digital simulation is increasingly critical as the incorporation of new technologies in today’s maritime vessels spreads, including advanced power electronics systems, intelligent control systems and state-of-the-art energy storage technologies.

Real-Time digital simulators provide accurate results at the design stage, enabling more efficient planning for potential issues with equipment failure or ship damage, and ensure a continuous power supply for electric loads.

More Electrical Aircraft (MEA) Pushes HIL to New Heights

The increased usage of electrical power intensifies the power demands on the electrical system, placing new constraints on dynamic performances and power quality. Today’s new power systems architectures must be designed, extensively analyzed, tested, validated and certified prior to implementation in actual aircraft.

Real-time simulation of MEA has been used ensure compliance with a wide variety of avionics test standards. Read more about using real-time simulation on the Bombardier Global Express for Avionics standard validation.

Onboard Power Systems Testing - MEA HIL testing

The Next Generation of Testing Tools

OPAL-RT provides the widest range of proven, state-of-the-art real-time simulation solutions for engineers working on onboard power systems applications. Accelerate projects by testing designs with Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL), while reducing overall project cost and staff and equipment risks. Benefit from the same advanced OPAL-RT solvers and libraries already being used across the industry to precisely simulate complex onboard power systems.
Onboard Power Systems HIL Testing tools - ARTEMiS-SSN


ARTEMiS-SSN provides the industry’s fastest and most accurate solvers for microgrid and onboard power system applications. With ever-shorter configuration of transmission lines and thinly coupled grids, standard HIL solving methods can be prevented from work optimally.

ARTEMiS solvers and algorithms use advanced decoupling techniques to circumvent this limitation, while providing accurate real-time simulation results.

Onboard Power Systems HIL Testing tool eHS


At the heart of OPAL-RT real-time simulation is eHS, a generic, reprogrammable FPGA-based electrical hardware solver. eHS enables users to bring into real-time any model created in the simulation tools of their choice: SimScape Power System, PSIM™, PLECS Blockset™ or Multisim™.

Recommended OPAL-RT Systems

Benefit from two of the world’s best real-time solvers. Use eMEGASIM’s ARTEMiS-SSN solver to simulate complex and component-heavy onboard power systems, and couple the systems with high-speed power electronics and electric drive models using eFPGASIM’s FPGA-based eHS solver.

A MATLAB™/Simulink™/SimScape Power System based real-time digital simulator, eMEGASIM accurately simulates the electromagnetic transients required by power grids, power electronics and converters systems.

After two decades of research and development in real-time simulation and with extensive experience in power electronics, OPAL-RT offers eFPGASIM, the industry’s most powerful and intuitive real-time simulator. eFPGASIM combines the performance of high-fidelity digital simulators with the very low latency required for power electronics controls.

Customer Success Stories

University of Michigan researchers use OPAL-RT Simulators for analysis & optimization of all-electric ship integrated power systems.

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GE Aviation uses OPAL-RT platforms in a sophisticated eco-environment software for More Electrical Aircraft research.

Discover how SNCF Voyageurs’ project, SimHIL, uses HIL simulation systematically in order to test railway traction chain control electronics, and, in so doing, prevent risks & significantly reduce the costs and delays of this essential testing process.

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