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Silicon Mobility with Cascadia Motion show up to 4.6% motor and inverter efficiency improvements by advanced control

Silicon Mobility, a solution provider of digital control for electrified powertrain of EV/HEV, shows 2% to 4.6% efficiency improvements of inverter and e-motor, compared with industry-standard SVPWM control technique, by using its smarter control.

Silicon Mobility, a solution provider of digital control for electrified powertrain of EV/HEV, shows 2% to 4.6% efficiency improvements of inverter and e-motor, compared with industry-standard SVPWM control technique, by using its smarter control.

During the 34th International Electric Vehicle Symposium – EVS34 -, Silicon Mobility in cooperation with Cascadia Motion presented their latest research and development results. In an academic paper presented during one the EVS34 lecture sessions, Silicon Mobility shows the usage of Optimized Pulse Pattern (OPP) modulation to increase the efficiency of the inverter and the permanent magnet synchronous motor (PMSM) by reducing switching losses in the inverter together with copper and iron losses in the electric motor.

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The OPP algorithm was implemented using Silicon Mobility’s high-performance OLEA T222 field-programmable control unit, which is dedicated for advanced, safe real-time control of energy conversion in the electric powertrain. The resulting system efficiency was measured on a high-voltage bench using a modified Cascadia Motion’s PM100 IGBT-based inverter and a BorgWarner HVH250 production e-motor. The system efficiency is compared with industry-standard SVPWM modulation using comparable Field-oriented Control (FOC) on 8 operating points representing real-world driving loads. As a result, the combined losses of the motor and inverter systems were reduced by 2% up to 4.6% using OPP depending on the motor operating conditions.

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An advanced software into an advanced integrated circuit

The range of an EV is strongly affected by the efficiency of its powertrain. The energy stored in the battery must be converted into vehicle motion while losing as little as possible energy (resulting in waste heat) in the inverter and motor. While many developments target improving the battery as the main energy storage, and the usage of more efficient wide band gap power devices, Silicon Mobility focuses on further efficiency optimizations by using advanced control solutions with innovative integrated circuit and software.

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Today, Silicon Mobility is capable, thanks to advanced control algorithms using the power of the OLEA FPCU chip, to significantly reduce energy losses and consequently improve efficiency of the inverter/e-Motor of electric powertrains.

Core of the highly innovative, patented solution lays in the dedicated architecture of the OLEA FPCU (Field Programmable Control Unit), which enables superior control performance for electric powertrain. Using programmable hardware acceleration for time-critical control loops, depending on the motor’s operating conditions, the OLEA FPCU may apply different types of modulation techniques to provide the optimal modulation for the targeted set point. In addition to Space Vector PWM (SVPWM), the FPCU supports the flexible implementation of generic Angle-based Pulse Control (APC) modulations. One example is Optimized Pulse Patterns (OPP), a modulation technique relying on a set of precisely applied switching (pulse) patterns that are pre-computed offline to optimize system behavior of motor and inverter. Its main purpose is to shape the harmonic signature of the control current in order to reduce iron and copper losses depending on the motor operating conditions.

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