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Solar PV Array Fed Water Pumping Using BLDC

Motor Drive with Boost-Buck Converter

Rajan Kumar Bhim Singh Ambrish Chandra Kamal Al-Haddad
Student Member, IEEE Fellow, IEEE Fellow, IEEE Fellow, IEEE
Deptt. of Electrical Engg. Deptt. of Electrical Engg. Deptt. of Electrical Engg. Deptt. of Electrical Engg.
Indian Institute of Technology Indian Institute of Technology ETS, Notre-Dame, Montreal ETS, Notre-Dame, Montreal
Delhi, New Delhi, India Delhi, New Delhi, India Quebec H3C 1K3, Canada Quebec H3C 1K3, Canada

Abstract— A boost-buck (BB) DC-DC converter is proposed noise problem associated with this drive [13]. In [14-15], the
for solar photovoltaic (SPV) array fed water pumping system SRM is employed in SPV array based water pumping system
using a permanent magnet brushless DC (BLDC) motor drive. To and satisfactory operation even under the dynamic condition is
design a BB converter with suitable voltage control, DC-DC boost claimed. Because of numbers of benefits of a permanent
and buck converters are cascaded such that it accomplishes the magnet brushless DC (BLDC) motor drive such as high
purpose of maximum power point tracking (MPPT) and soft efficiency, long life, high reliability, low radio frequency
starting of the BLDC motor. The BB converter exhibits the interference and noise and no maintenance [16], various
advantages of both the boost and buck converters and researchers are focusing on this drive for SPV array based
interestingly emerges as a solution to problems associated with
water pumping and so opted in this work. A BLDC motor is
these converters in SPV applications. The good switch utilization,
employed to drive the water pump based on SPV array in [17-
high efficiency, non-inverting output voltage and low stress on
power devices are the features of BB converter. This paper deals 19], which manifests its suitability for water pumping.
with the starting, dynamic and steady state performances under A DC-DC converter is commonly placed between the SPV
varying atmospheric conditions and examines the effectiveness of array and VSI (voltage source inverter) fed BLDC motor-
the BLDC motor with the proposed BB converter for SPV based pump in order to track the optimum operating point of the
water pumping. Simulated results using MATLAB/Simulink SPV array using a maximum power point tracking (MPPT)
followed by the experimental validation have demonstrated the
technique [20-25]. Non-isolated DC–DC buck, boost, buck–
suitability of this drive for SPV based water pumping system.
boost, Cuk and SEPIC (Single Ended Primary Inductor
Keywords— BB converter, SPV array, BLDC motor, MPPT, Converter) converters used for MPPT in SPV applications are
Soft starting. reviewed and compared in [26] and concluded that a buck-
boost converter is best suited for the SPV system. On the other
hand, buck-boost and Cuk converters have poor switch
I. INTRODUCTION utilization (maximum switch utilization of 0.25 is realized at
Solar photovoltaic (SPV) energy has emerged as an duty cycle = 0.5), high stress on power devices and inverting
alternative source of electricity generation having numbers of output voltage [27]. These converters increase complexity due
advantages. Moreover, the water pumping has become a cost to the associated circuit for negative voltage feedback sensing
effective application of SPV energy now a days, especially in which also slows down the system response [28]. Similarly,
remote locations and rural areas [1-2]. the power device of SEPIC converter also suffers from high
voltage stress. Besides that, the Cuk and SEPIC converters
A three-phase induction motor (IM) is widely used in SPV have the high number of components, which contribute to
array fed water pumping for irrigation and domestic purposes their main drawback. A DC-DC boost converter is used in [19,
due to its suitability for applications in contaminated and 29-30] as an intermediate power converter to improve energy
isolated areas, low cost, reliability and low maintenance conversion efficiency of the BLDC motor driven SPV array
requirement [3-4]. A DC motor is also used in [5-7], but fed water pumping system. Having known that the boost
owing to a high maintenance requirement caused by the converter always increases the voltage level at its output and
presence of brushes and commutator, it is not preferred for hence the soft starting of BLDC motor with this converter is
water pumping. However, a complicated control of IM and not possible, so it is not recommended. A DC-DC buck
high efficiency of a permanent magnet synchronous motor converter is not used so far in SPV array fed water pumping
(PMSM) than an IM has motivated the researchers to employ but using this converter calls for a large and expensive input
a PMSM drive where a high power submersible water capacitor to get a ripple free input current [26].
pumping system is installed [8-10]. Some attempts in the area
of SPV array fed water pumping using a synchronous Aggregating the advantages of the boost and buck
reluctance motor (SyRM) have been made in the literature converters such as good switch utilization, high efficiency,
[11-12]. It has been observed that the SyRM can run non-inverting input and output voltage and low stress on
satisfactory for a limited range of solar insolation level. power devices [27], a double-switch buck-boost converter is
Likewise, a switched reluctance motor (SRM) has also not employed for the front stage of the two-stage SPV grid-
received much attention for SPV array fed water pumping till connected inverter in [31-32]. A buck converter is placed
now, probably due to a very high torque ripple and acoustic before a boost converter in this double-switch buck-boost

978-1-4673-7151-3/15/$31.00 ©2015 IEEE 5741

converter. Placing the boost converter before the buck
converter offers additional advantages in SPV array fed BLDC
motor driven water pump. The placement of the boost
converter at the front end of buck converter and output of SPV
array makes the input current continuous because the input
inductor of the boost converter works as a ripple filter. (a) (b)
Secondly, the placement of the buck converter at the back end
of the boost converter and before the VSI contributes to get
the continuous output current and soft starting of the BLDC
motor. Therefore, a boost-buck (BB) DC-DC converter which
follows the aforementioned sequence of cascading the boost
and buck converters is proposed to achieve the soft starting of (c) (d) (e)
Fig.2 Two mode operation of the BB converter, (a) SPV array fed BB
the BLDC motor and ripple free input current. The BB converter, (b) When sw1 and sw2 are on, (c) When sw1 is off and sw2 is on, (d)
converter is always operated in continuous conduction mode When sw1 is on and sw2 is off, (e) When sw1 and sw2 are off
(CCM) to reduce the stresses on the devices and components.
The proposed BB converter, operating as a non-inverting sw1
buck-boost converter also provides an additional feature of
middle stage voltage control of the boost and buck converters. sw2

The detailed operation and working principle of the proposed

BB converter are explained in the following sections. vL1 vpv
vpv -
The starting, dynamic and steady state performances of an vdc1

electronically commutated BLDC motor coupled with a water iL1

pump fed by SPV array-BB converter are analyzed under the
variation of atmospheric conditions through simulated results vdc1
using MATLAB/Simulink and experimental validation.
vL2 vdc1 - vdc2
Fig.1 shows the configuration of the proposed SPV array-
BB converter fed BLDC motor drive coupled to a water pump. iL2

An SPV array precedes the BB converter which is connected

to a VSI feeding the BLDC motor-pump. Using an MPPT
algorithm, MPP of the SPV array is tracked by operating the 0 1/fsw1 1/fsw2 3/fsw1
IGBT (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor) switch of the boost (a) (b)
converter. An additional voltage control is provided at the Fig.3 BB converter variables illustrating its two mode operation, (a) When the
input of buck converter which generates the switching pulses switching starts with sw1 on, (b) When the switching starts with sw1 off
for the IGBT switch of the buck converter. An inbuilt encoder
on the BLDC motor generates the Hall Effect signals which possible combinations of switching states of the two switches
are further decoded to generate the switching pulses for the of BB converter are considered for elaboration of the
VSI by the so called electronic commutation of BLDC motor. operation and working principle. According to the position of
The design and working principle of each stage of the switches, the operation of the converter is categorized in two
configuration are elaborated in the following sections. modes; (i) synchronized control mode and (ii) combined
control mode.
(i) When the position of both the switches is same i.e. both
Fig. 2(a) represents the SPV array fed BB converter the switches are either on or off, the converter operates in
connected to the VSI fed BLDC motor pump. All the four the synchronized control mode.
(ii) When the position of both the switches is different i.e. one
is on and other is off, the converter operates in combined
control mode.
Both the switches can be controlled independently. Figs. 2(b-
e) show the two mode operation of the BB converter, where,
L1, L2, C1 and C2 are the input inductor, output inductor,
intermediate capacitor and the output capacitor of BB
converter respectively. Figs. 3(a-b) show corresponding
waveforms of the converter variables, where, sw1, sw2, vL1, iL1,
vdc1, vL2, iL2 and vdc2 are the switch position of the boost
converter, switch position of buck converter, voltage across
Fig.1 Configuration of the SPV array - BB converter fed BLDC motor driven L1, current flowing through L1, voltage across C1, voltage
water pumping system across L2, current flowing through L2 and voltage across C2

respectively. vpv is the voltage of SPV array. To get all the four 1
combinations of switching states, it is considered that the Vdc1 = v pv (1)
1 − D1
switching frequency of the boost converter, fsw1 and the
switching frequency of the buck converter, fsw2 are not equal. Similarly, when the buck converter operates in continuous
For simplicity, it is also considered that the duty cycle of the conduction mode, in terms of Vdc2, Vdc1 is expressed as [27],
boost converter, D1 and the duty cycle of the buck converter, 1
D2 are equal and the BB converter operates in continuous Vdc1 = Vdc 2 (2)
conduction mode. D2
Fig. 3(a) represents the waveforms when the switching of where Vdc1 and Vdc2 are average values of output voltages of
the BB converter starts with the on state of sw1 (irrespective of boost-buck converter.
the state of sw2). When the converter operates in synchronized Solving (1) and (2) yields a relation between output and input
control mode and both the switches are on as shown in Fig. voltages of this converter as,
2(b), L1 and L2 store energy supplied by the SPV array and Vdc 2 D2
currents iL1 and iL2 rise while C1 discharges and appears as a = (3)
v pv 1 − D1
voltage source for the buck converter, therefore vdc1 falls.
Now, when sw1 is off but sw2 is still on as shown in Fig. 2(c), It is clear from (3) that the BB converter operates as a non-
the converter operates in combined control mode; L1 transfers inverting buck-boost converter with independent control of
some amount of the stored energy to C1 and remaining energy both the boost and buck converters.
to the load via the buck converter, hence vdc1 increases very
slowly because the rate of charging of C1 reduces; iL1 falls and IV. DESIGN OF PROPOSED SYSTEM
iL2 still rises. Next, when sw1 is on but sw2 is off as shown in
Fig. 2(d), L1 stores energy resulting in the rise of iL1. L2 The proposed system consists of a SPV array, a BB
transfers the stored energy to the load, resulting in the fall of converter, VSI and a BLDC motor coupled to a water pump.
iL2; vdc1 decreases very slowly because C1 is disconnected to The components of the SPV array, BB converter and the water
the circuit and the rate of discharging of C1 reduces. When pump are designed as per the requirement of the water pump
both the switches are off as shown in Fig. 2(e), the converter load fed by the SPV array. A BLDC motor of 4.4 kW power
again enters in synchronized control mode; L1 transfers the rating is selected to drive a water pump and various
stored energy to C1. L2 transfers the stored energy to the load components of the proposed system are designed accordingly
and hence iL1 and iL2 fall but vdc1 rises. The variation in vdc2 is as elaborated in the following sections.
exactly similar as in buck converter operation [27] for all the
combinations of sw1 and sw2. A. Design of SPV Array
The SPV array of 5.1 kW maximum power rating,
Fig. 3(b) represents the waveforms when the switching of
somewhat more than required by the motor-pump system is
the BB converter starts with the off state of sw1 (irrespective of
designed in view of the losses in the converter and the motor.
the state of sw2). Behavior of vdc1 is looking different from as
The specifications of HBL Power Systems Ltd. make solar PV
in Fig. 3(a), but of course vdc1 also follows the aforementioned
module, HB-12100 [33], consists of 36 cells connected in
operating principle as the other variables follow. This
series are used to design the SPV array of maximum power
difference in the behavior of vdc1 is actually due the difference
rating, Pmpp = 5.1 kW at the standard value of solar insolation
in the position of switches at the starting. When the converter
(1000 W/m2). This module has open circuit voltage and short
operates in synchronized control mode and both the switches
circuit current of 21 V and 7.1 A respectively. Likewise, the
are off as shown in Fig. 2(e), L1 transfers the stored energy to
voltage, Vm, current, Im and power, P of this module at MPP
C1 resulting in the rise of vdc1. Now, when sw1 is on but sw2 is
are 17 V, 6 A and 100 W respectively.
still off as shown in Fig. 2(d), the converter operates in
combined control mode; vdc1 decreases very slowly because C1 Voltage of the SPV array at MPP is considered as, Vmpp =
is disconnected to the circuit and the rate of discharging of C1 170 V as per the requirement of the proposed system. Now,
reduces. Next, when sw1 is off but sw2 is on as shown in Fig. the current of the SPV array at MPP, Impp is estimated as,
2(c), L1 transfers some amount of the stored energy to C1 and
remaining energy to the load via the buck converter, hence vdc1 Pmpp
I mpp = = 5100/170 = 30 A (4)
increases very slowly because the rate of charging of C1 Vmpp
reduces. When both the switches are on as shown in Fig. 2(b),
the converter again enters synchronized control mode. C1 Numbers of modules required to connect in series are as,
discharges and appears as a voltage source for the buck Vmpp
converter, therefore vdc1 falls. Ns = = 170/17 = 10 (5)
It can be remarked from Figs. 3(a-b) that the rate of
charging/discharging of C1 decreases when the converter Numbers of modules required to connect in parallel are as,
operates in combined control mode. Inversely saying, vdc1 I mpp
varies with increased rate of charging/ discharging of C1 in Np = =30/6 = 5 (6)
synchronized control mode. When the boost converter
operates in continuous conduction mode, in terms of vpv, Vdc1 Based on these estimated values of parameters, the SPV array
is expressed as [27], of required size is designed.

B. Design of BB Converter Neglecting a very low current flowing through C2, an average
The voltage at the input of the buck converter which is the current flowing through the DC link of VSI, Idc2 is equal to IL2
output voltage of the boost converter is maintained at Vdc1 = i.e. Idc2 = IL2 = 25.5 A. Since 6th harmonic component of the
225 V. On the other hand, Vmpp appears as the input voltage of motor voltage appears on the DC link of VSI, limiting the
boost converter as, vpv = Vmpp = 170 V. Using (1), D1 is voltage ripple, ǻVdc2 in vdc2 at 10%, C2 is estimated
estimated as, corresponding to Ȧh and Ȧl as,
Vdc1 − v pv 225 − 170 C2 (corresponding to Ȧh) =
D1 = = = 0.24 (7)
Vdc1 225 I dc 2 25.5
= = 338 μ F (14)
Switching frequencies fsw1 = fsw2 = 20 kHz are selected. Such a 6* ωh * ΔVdc 2 6*628.3* 200*0.1
high value of switching frequency is selected to minimize the C2 (corresponding to Ȧl) =
amount of ripples in iL1, iL2 and vdc1 even with the lower values I dc 2 25.5
of the converter elements. The current of the SPV array at = = 615 μ F (15)
6* ωl * ΔVdc 2 6 *345.6* 200*0.1
MPP, Impp flows through L1 resulting in an average current, IL1
= ipv = Impp = 30 A. Limiting the current ripple, ǻIL1 in iL1 at To ensure the satisfactory performance of the BLDC motor
8%, L1 is estimated as [27], pump system, the higher value of C2 = 615 ȝF § 620 ȝF is
v pv D1 170*0.24 selected out of the two estimated values.
L1 = = = 0.85 mH § 1 mH (8) The proposed BB converter is designed as per these estimated
f sw1ΔI L1 20000*30*0.08 values of the components.
Neglecting the converter power loss, average current at the
output of boost converter, Idc1 = Pmpp/Vdc1 = 5100/225 = 22.67 C. Design of Water Pump
A. Limiting the voltage ripple, ǻVdc1 in vdc1 at 6%, C1 is A water pump is designed and selected on the basis of
estimated as [27], rated speed and power of the BLDC motor. Since the rated
I *D 22.67 *0.24 speed, Nrated and power of the motor, Pm are 2000 rpm and 4.4
C1 = dc1 1 = = 20 ȝF (9) kW respectively, kȦ is estimated as [7],
f sw1 * ΔVdc1 20000* 225*0.06
P 4400
The average value of the output voltage of the buck converter kω = m3 = = 4.79 *10 −4 W/(rad/sec)3 (16)
which is the DC voltage rating of the BLDC motor is as, Vdc2 ωm ( 2 * π * 2000 / 60 ) 2
= 200 V. Using (2), D2 is estimated as, where kȦ is a constant in W/(rad/sec)3 and Ȧm is the
V 200 mechanical speed of the BLDC motor in rad/sec.
D2 = dc 2 = = 0.89 (10)
Vdc1 225 A suitable water pump with these data is selected for the
Neglecting, converter power losses, average current flowing proposed system.
through L2 is as, IL2 = Pmpp/Vdc2 = 5100/200 = 25.5 A. Limiting
the current ripple, ǻIL2 in iL2 at 5%, L2 is estimated as [27],
V *(1 − D2 ) * D2 225*(1 − 0.89) *0.89 The control of the proposed SPV array fed BB converter
L2 = dc1 =
f sw 2 * ΔI L 2 20000* 25.5*0.05 operated VSI-BLDC motor for water pumping system is
= 0.86 mH § 1 mH (11) classified into three parts as follows.
The highest and lowest frequencies of the VSI output voltage A. Maximum Power Point Tracking
to the motor are considered to estimate the value of DC link
capacitor, C2. The highest value of VSI output voltage An incremental conductance (INC) MPPT algorithm is
frequency, Ȧh (in rad/sec.) is calculated corresponding to the used in order to operate the SPV array at its optimum
rated speed of the motor while the lowest value of VSI output operating point. This method is less confused by noise and the
voltage frequency, Ȧl (in rad/sec.) is calculated corresponding system dynamics and has a very good tracking performance
to the minimum speed of a motor required to pump the water under the rapidly changing environmental condition [20].
(N = 1100 rpm) as,
N *P B. Input Voltage Control of Buck Converter
ωh = 2 * π * f = 2 * π * rated As shown in Fig. 1, an additional voltage control feature is
provided at the input stage of buck converter, so that the buck
2000 * 6
= 2 *π * = 628.3 rad/sec. (12) converter always experiences a constant voltage at its input,
120 regardless of the variation in atmospheric condition. The
N *P reference input voltage, Vdc1,ref is compared with the sensed
ωl = 2 * π * f = 2 * π * input voltage, vdc1 of the buck converter and error is passed
through a proportional-integral (PI) controller. The output of
1100 * 6
= 2 *π * = 345.6 rad/sec. (13) the PI controller is compared with 1 which is the maximum
120 possible value of a duty cycle. This comparison gives the duty
where f is the frequency of VSI output voltage in Hz; Nrated is cycle of buck converter, D2 which is further compared with
rated speed of the BLDC motor; P is the numbers of poles in the high frequency carrier wave to generate the switching
the BLDC motor. pulses for the switch of buck converter.

C. Electronic Commutation of BLDC Motor boost converter, switch utilization increases when the duty
An inbuilt Hall-effect position sensor of the BLDC motor cycle, D1 goes down, whereas for the buck converter, switch
senses the rotor position, ș on 60o span and generates 3 Hall utilization increases when the duty cycle, D2 goes up. The
signals which are decoded to generate the appropriate output voltage, Vdc1 = 225 V results in a lower value of D1 and
switching pulses for the IGBT switches of VSI by the a higher value of D2 as described in the section – IV(B) which
electronic commutation of BLDC motor [34]. Various provides the better switch utilization of both the boost and
parameters and ratings of the BLDC motor are given in buck converters. Increasing the value of Vdc1 not only
Appendices. deteriorates the switch utilization but increases the voltage
stress on both the switches also.
VI. SIMULATED PERFORMANCE OF PROPOSED SYSTEM The value of continuous current flowing through the output
The starting, dynamic and steady state performances of the inductor, iL2 appears as the peak magnitude of the current
proposed SPV array based BB converter fed VSI-BLDC flowing through the switch of the buck converter, isw2. The DC
motor-pump system has been verified by simulating the link voltage, vdc2, containing a negligible amount of ripple,
behavior of BLDC motor-pump under varying insolation level
of SPV array using MATLAB/Simulink environment. The
solar insolation level, S is randomly varied from 200 W/m2 to
1000 W/m2. Figs. 4-5 demonstrate the satisfactory
performance of the proposed system, shown in Fig. 1.

A. Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) of SPV array

An incremental conductance MPPT algorithm is applied to
optimize the operating point of the SPV array. Step size or a (a)
perturbation in the duty ratio plays a vital role in the operation
of the proposed system. A higher value of step size results in
the oscillation around the maximum power point. Therefore, a
low value of step size, ǻD1 = 0.001 is selected which increases
the tracking time but contributes in the soft starting of the
BLDC motor. Fig. 4(a) shows that when the MPPT algorithm
is executed and MPP is tracked properly, the SPV array
voltage, vpv reaches the voltage at MPP, Vmpp; SPV array
current, ipv reaches the current at MPP, Impp and hence the SPV
array power, Ppv reaches the MPP, Pmpp at 1000 W/m2.
Likewise, Fig. 5(a) shows excellent tracking performance
under the random variation in solar insolation level, S. (c) (b)
Fig.4 Performance of SPV array - BB converter fed VSI-BLDC motor pump
B. Performance of BB converter system at 1000 W/m2, (a) SPV array variables, (b) BB converter variables, (c)
BLDC motor-pump variables
The BB converter is employed as an intermediate DC-DC
converter between the SPV array and VSI in order to
accomplish the functions of MPPT and soft starting of the
BLDC motor with voltage control feature at the input of the
buck converter. The BB converter is always operated in
continuous conduction mode as shown in Figs. 4(b) and 5(b)
respectively at 1000 W/m2 and under the random variation in
solar insolation level. A continuous current flowing through
the input inductor, iL1 is the current of the SPV array. The
input inductor, L1 makes iL1, continuous and almost ripple free.
The value of output voltage of the boost converter, vdc1 (a)
appears as the peak magnitude of the voltage across the
switches of the boost converter and buck converter, vsw1 and
vsw2 respectively. However, the duty cycles of both the
switches are different. Similarly, the value of iL1 appears as the
peak magnitude of the current flowing through the switch of
the boost converter, isw1. Minimum possible stress on the
switch is observed due to the continuous conduction mode
operation of the converter.
The output voltage, vdc1 which appears as the input voltage
for the buck converter is maintained at 225 V in view of better (c) (b)
Fig.5 Performance of SPV array - BB converter fed VSI-BLDC motor pump
switch utilization of both the boost and buck converters. The system under varying solar insolation level conditions, (a) SPV array
switch utilization depends on the duty cycle [27]. For the variables, (b) BB converter variables, (c) BLDC motor-pump variables

increases slowly and reaches steady state condition. Voltage volumetric pump, possessing proportional relationship
stresses of both switches vsw1 and vsw2 are constant for each between torque and speed. Because of the rating constraints,
solar insolation level because these depend on Vdc1 which is experiments are carried out with a BLDC motor of 1.3 kW,
always maintained at a constant value. Other converter 3000 rpm. Detailed specifications of SPV array, BB converter
variables vary according to the variation in solar insolation and BLDC motor used for test are given in Appendices. A
level as shown in Fig. 5(b). voltage sensor (LV-25P) and a current sensor (LA-55P) are
used for MPPT control. To provide the isolation between real
C. Performance of BLDC Motor - Pump at 1000 W/m2 time controller and gate drivers, the optocouplers (6N136) are
The starting and steady state performances of SPV array- used. Experimental performance and operation of the
BB converter fed BLDC motor pump system at the standard proposed system are analyzed in the following sections.
solar insolation level of 1000 W/m2 are shown in Fig. 4(c).
The back EMF and the stator current of only phase ‘a’ are A. Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) of SPV Array
shown. In proportion to the DC link voltage of VSI, vdc2, the Test results for MPPT of SPV array at 1000 W/m2 and 200
back EMF of phase ‘a,’ ea increases and reaches the rated W/m2 are shown in Figs. 6(a) and (b) respectively. The
value at steady state condition. The stator current of phase ‘a,’ recorded ppv - vpv and ipv - vpv characteristics clearly state that
isa also increases and settles down at the rated value. The the proposed system always operates at MPP regardless of the
starting stator current of the motor is controlled within the variation in solar insolation level. Tracking efficiency for both
acceptable limit. At 1000 W/m2, the motor runs at full load, the insolation level is 99.96%.
hence the speed, N increases and reaches the rated value at
steady state condition. At full load, motor develops the rated B. Steady State Performance at 1000 W/m2
electromagnetic torque, Te to drive the water pump. A small The recorded waveforms of various indices of SPV array,
pulsation in Te is reflected from the ripples present in the DC BB converter and BLDC motor under steady state at 1000
link current of VSI. Pump load torque, TL is equal to the W/m2 are shown in Fig. 7 and elaborated in the following sub-
electromagnetic torque, Te as an evidence of stable operation sections. All the indices reach their rated values at the standard
of the motor - pump. solar insolation level i.e. 1000 W/m2.
D. Dynamic Performance of BLDC Motor - Pump 1) Performance of SPV Array: Fig. 7(a) shows the
Fig. 5(c) shows the dynamic performance of SPV array-BB recorded SPV array indices vpv, ipv and ppv along with middle
converter fed BLDC motor pump system. A dynamic variation stage voltage, vdc1 of the BB converter, which is always
in the solar insolation level is considered in 5 steps; 200 W/m2 maintained at 300 V. These indices correspond to the
from 0 to 0.2 s., 600 W/m2 from 0.2 to 0.4 s., 1000 W/m2 from operation of the array at MPP. At MPP, ipv = 6.2 A and ppv =
0.4 to 0.6 s., 800 W/m2 from 0.6 to 0.8 s. and 400 W/m2 from 1.5 kW are observed. Moreover, vpv = 241.5 V is boosted to
0.8 to 1.0 s. The satisfactory performance is verified under this vdc1 = 300 V.
large dynamic variation in atmospheric condition. 2) Operation of BB Converter: Fig. 7(b) exhibits voltage
The variation of the motor-pump indices such as, the back and current stress of both the switches of BB converter. The
EMF, ea, the stator current, isa, the motor speed, N, the peak voltage stress, vsw1 and vsw2 are same as vdc1 = 300 V. The
electromagnetic torque, Te and the pump load torque, TL with peak current stress, isw1 and isw2 are 9 A and 5 A respectively.
respect to the solar insolation level, S are shown in Fig. 5(c). Likewise, Fig. 7(c) exhibits vL1, iL1, vL2 and iL2. It is observed
Since all the motor-pump indices are dependent of solar from recorded waveforms that the converter operates in CCM,
insolation level, these vary in proportion to the solar insolation resulting in a limited stress on the devices. The switches sw1
level only. The rated values of all the performance indices are and sw2 operate at duty ratio of 0.2 and 0.95 respectively,
obtained during the standard solar insolation level i.e. 1000 justifying better switch utilization of both the switches. It may
W/m2. At the minimum solar insolation level of 200 W/m2, the be noted that the recorded isw1 and isw2 contain the current of
performance indices possess their minimum values. decoupled capacitor directly screwed on the same module.
Nevertheless, the speed of the motor is observed as 1107 rpm, Path to the IGBT and diode has not been accessible for current
sufficient to pump some amount of the water. measurement. Hence a small ringing in isw1 and isw2 is clearly
VII. HARDWARE VALIDATION OF PROPOSED SYSTEM 3) Performance of BLDC Motor: Fig. 7(d) shows the stator
current of phase ‘a,’ isa, and speed, N along with vdc1 and vdc2.
The various performances of INC-MPPT, BB converter
vdc1 = 300 V is reduced to rated DC voltage of the BLDC
and BLDC motor-pump are validated on a developed
motor, vdc2 = 285 V, by buck operation, at the DC link of VSI .
prototype of the proposed system. The system constitutes a
The motor draws the rated current of 4.3 A and runs at its
SPV array simulator (AMETEK ETS 600×17DPVF), BB
rated speed of 3000 rpm, resulting in the water pumping with
converter, VSI (SEMIKRON MD B6CI 600/415-35F), real
full capacity.
time controller (dSPACE 1104) to perform MPPT and
electronic commutation, BLDC motor (Motor Power
Company make) coupled with a DC generator (Benn make) C. Starting Performance of Proposed System
and resistive load bank. A volumetric pump is realized by Figs. 8 (a) and (b) represent the various performance
driving the DC generator feeding resistive load bank. Thus, indices ipv, vdc1, vdc2 and isa at the starting for 1000 W/m2 and
this motor-generator-load set becomes analogous to a 200 W/m2 respectively. The BLDC motor draws permissible

starting current at both the standard and minimum solar
insolation level. As the MPPT algorithm moves operating
point towards the MPP, all these indices also reach their Ch.1: (ipv) 5 A/div. Ch.1: (ipv) 1 A/div.
steady state values. The PI controller brings vdc1 to its set value Ch.2: (vdc1) 200 V/div. Ch.2: (vdc1) 200 V/div.
of 300 V. Moreover, the speed is not diminished below 1100 Ch.3: (vdc2) 100 V/div.
Ch.3: (vdc2) 200 V/div.
rpm in any case, as the motor attains 1190 rpm at 200 W/m2, Ch.4: (isa) 5 A/div.
testifying the uninterrupted water pumping.
Ch.4: (isa) 10 A/div.

D. Dynamic Performance of Proposed System

(a) (b)
Figs. 9 (a) and (b) represent the dynamic behavior of
Fig. 8 Starting performance at (a) 1000 W/m2, (b) 200 W/m2
various performance indices, ipv, vdc1, vdc2 and isa under the
dynamically varying solar insolation level from 500 W/m2 to
Next steady state
1000 W/m2 and vice versa respectively. This large variation is Ch.1: (ipv) 5 A/div.
Ch.1: (ipv) 5 A/div.
considered to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed Ch.2: (vdc1) 100 V/div.
Ch.2: (vdc1) 100 V/div.
system at worst condition. It is clearly observed that the MPP Insolation Insolation Next steady state
increased Ch.3: (vdc2) 200 V/div.
is effectively tracked and the performance is not affected by decreased Ch.3: (vdc2) 200 V/div.
the unexpected dynamics. The change in solar irradiance from Ch.4: (isa) 10 A/div.
Ch.4: (isa) 10 A/div.
500 W/m2 to 1000 W/m2 results in the change in ipv from 3.1
A to 6.2 A, vdc2 from 190 V to 285 V and isa from 3 A to 4.3
A. The PI controller always regulates vdc1 to its set value of
300 V irrespective of the variation in solar insolation level, (a) (b)
Fig. 9 Dynamic performance of proposed system under varying solar
which also justifies the proper functioning of middle stage
insolation level (a) 500 W/m to 1000 W/m , (b) 1000 W/m2 to 500 W/m2
2 2
voltage control loop. Thus the water pumping is not
interrupted at all. E. Efficiency Estimation of Proposed System
Considering the experimental data, efficiency of the
proposed SPV array fed BLDC motor-pump, subjected to the
variation in atmospheric condition, is estimated as indicated in
Table I, where Ppv, Pm and Ș are respectively the power of
SPV array at MPP, mechanical power output of the BLDC
motor and efficiency. This efficiency estimation includes the
efficiency of MPPT, BB converter, VSI and BLDC motor.
The efficiency at 200 W/m2 is 78% while the maximum
efficiency of 86.6% is obtained at 1000 W/m2.
(a) (b)
Fig.6 MPPT performance at (a) 1000 W/m2, (b) 200 W/m2 S (W/m2) 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1000
Ppv (W) 275 430 595 750 880 1020 1180 1330 1500
Pm (W) 214.5 347 486 620 735 868 1009 1145 1300
Ș (%) 78 80.6 81.6 82.6 83.5 85.0 85.5 86.0 86.6
Ch.1: (vpv) 200 V/div.
Ch.1: (vsw1) 200 V/div. VIII. CONCLUSIONS
Ch.2: (ipv) 5 A/div.
Ch.2: (isw1) 10 A/div. The DC-DC boost-buck converter for SPV array fed
Ch.3: (ppv) 1 kW/div.
BLDC motor driven water pump has been proposed. The
Ch.4: (vdc1) 200 V/div.
complete system has been designed, modeled and simulated in
Ch.3: (vsw2) 200 V/div. MATLAB/Simulink environment and implemented on a
Ch.4: (isw2) 10 A/div.
developed hardware prototype. Utilizing all the properties of
(a) (b) both the boost and buck converters and connecting these two
converters in an appropriate manner, a new BB converter with
Ch.1: (vL1) 200 V/div. the low valued components has been designed and operated in
Ch.1: (vdc1) 200 V/div.
CCM. Working as a non-inverting buck-boost converter, the
Ch.2: (iL1) 10 A/div.
Ch.2: (vdc2) 200 V/div.
proposed BB converter has eliminated the drawbacks of the
Ch.3: (vL2) 200 V/div.
buck, boost and topologies of buck-boost converters used in
SPV based applications. The water pumping has been attained
Ch.3: (isa) 10 A/div. even at the minimum solar insolation level and the starting
Ch.4: (iL2) 5 A/div. Ch.4: (N) 2 krpm/div. current of the motor has been controlled within the permissible
range. Moreover, fundamental frequency switching of the VSI
has avoided the high frequency switching losses. The
(c) (d) presented simulation and experimental performances of the
Fig. 7 Steady state performance of (a) SPV array, (b)-(c) BB converter, (d) proposed system at starting, dynamic and steady state have
BLDC motor, at 1000 W/m2 proven its suitability for the SPV array based water pumping.

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